With crispy rice paper bacon, zesty herb aioli, and spicy tomato habanero jam, this vegan BLT is a flavor explosion that might just become your new favorite sandwich!
Bring a large pot of water to a boil. Set up a bowl of ice water.
Cut an X in the bottom of each tomato, then drop them into the boiling water and blanch until the skins start to peel back, about 30 seconds. Use a spider strainer or slotted spoon to transfer the tomatoes to the ice water. When cool, peel the skins from the tomatoes with your fingertips and a paring knife. Remove the cores and roughly chop the peeled tomatoes. You should have about 8 cups.
Heat the oil in a medium saucepan over low heat. Add the onions and sweat until soft, about 5 minutes. You don’t want to brown the onions, just soften or "sweat" them. Add the garlic and continue sweating for 3 to 4 minutes more.
Add the chopped tomatoes and everything else and crank the heat to high. Bring the mixture to a simmer, then cut the heat to low. Let everything simmer gently until thickened to a soft jam-like consistency, 1 to 1¼ hours. With all that sugar, the jam will want to burn on the bottom. Don’t let it. Stir the pot often to keep the jam from sticking and burning. The finished consistency should be like thin jam. It will thicken up more when it cools.
When the hot jam is nice and thick but still pourable, ladle or pour the jam into a pint-size Mason jar. Screw on the lid and let the jam sit at room temperature until cooled, 1 to 2 hours. The heat in the jar should create a vacuum, sucking down the lid. When cooled, store the jam in the fridge. It will keep for a few weeks.
Whisk everything together in a small mixing bowl or jar. Use immediately or cover and chill in the fridge for about a week.
In a bowl or jar, whisk or shake together the tamari, maple syrup, sriracha, liquid smoke if using, granulated onion, paprika, garlic, salt, and pepper.
Preheat the oven to 350ºF, and line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Using 10 rice papers (about 8½-inch diameter), dip each in warm water to soften, then pat dry with clean kitchen towels. Dip a pastry brush in the marinade and paint the paper all over with marinade. Fold the paper in half to make a half-moon shape, then cut it crosswise into strips about 1 inch wide. Place the folded strips on the prepared baking sheet and repeat with the remaining rice papers. Bake the strips (in batches if necessary) until crispy, about 20 minutes.
Choose your favorite bread, like a small ciabatta bread roll sliced in half.
Lather on Herb Aioli and Tomato Habanero Jam.
Layer the sandwich with thinly shaved red onion, thin slices of vine-ripened tomato, your favorite Plant Bacon, and then Bibb lettuce. Chomp down and enjoy with a crisp pilsner beer!
Excerpted from the book THE WICKED HEALTHY COOKBOOK by Chad Sarno, Derek Sarno, and David Joachim. Copyright © 2018 by Chad Sarno and Derek Sarno. Reprinted with permission of Grand Central Life & Style. All rights reserved.
Nutrition information is estimated for 1 sandwich including 2 tablespoons of aioli, 2 tablespoons of tomato habanero jam, and 1/4 of a batch of rice paper bacon.