How to Make Sandwiches and Wraps That Rise Above the Routine – Orange County Register


Oh, the relief that the enclosure kitchen can provide. When you stay locked up at home, one day can look a lot like the last. Cooking may be the best distinctive component. But unless you’re feeding the neighborhood or serving dinners to a large family, those meals can produce a lot of leftovers.

Sandwiches can be a creative way to use those repetitions that fill the fridge. Everything from cooked steak, chicken, pork, or seafood leftovers can be the cornerstone of shiny sandwiches. Proteins, chilled and cut into manageable chunks, can star in traditional bread-to-slice deliveries, as well as dipping into pita halves or wrapping burrito-style wraps. Or, try a sturdy lettuce taco by dipping the filling into a folded lettuce leaf.

If you like, try some tasty condiments to add dynamism. Store-bought chutney can be tossed with pieces of chicken or pork. Raita, the classic Indian yogurt sauce, can be delicious in a chicken sandwich (to combine 1 cup Greek-style Greek yogurt with whole milk, 1 teaspoon minced garlic, 3/4 cup cucumber, salt and pepper without finely chopped seeds). Or for a spicy twist, make a lime and chili mayonnaise by combining 1/4 cup mayonnaise with 1 tablespoon fresh lime juice, 1/2 tablespoon chili powder, 1 teaspoon minced garlic, plus salt and pepper.

These are some of the favorite sandwich riffs to use from the leftovers in our house:

Pita sandwiches stuffed with chopped salad and cheese

Chopped salad is a tasty filling for pita bread pockets and the formula is open to variations depending on what you have on hand in your vegetable container. The crunchy mix takes a nap with a lime and honey vinaigrette and welcomes a wide variety of leftover additions: ham or chicken, filet or sauteed tofu cubes are delicious, as are rinsed and drained canned beans. I like the cheery edge that Pepper Jack cheese brings, as well as the pitted green olives.

Performance: 8 halves

Take a chopped salad with cucumber slices and diced avocado and tomato, add the leftover protein from the fridge, put it in a pita and you will have a satisfying meal. (Photo by Nick Koon)


1/4 cup fresh lime juice

1/4 cup of extra virgin olive oil

1 tablespoon of honey

2 tablespoons chopped fresh mint or fresh basil

Salt and pepper to taste

1 ripe avocado, diced

3/4 cup diced leftover meat or chicken

2 greenhouse cucumbers, cut in half lengthwise, sliced ​​into 1/4-inch slices

3 Roma tomatoes, diced or several cherry tomatoes cut in half or quarter

1/2 cup green olives, sliced

1 cup grated pepper-jack cheese

2 romaine lettuce hearts, chopped into large pieces (about 6 cups)

4 rounds of pita (6 1/2 inches)


1. In a large bowl, combine lemon juice, oil, and honey; stir to combine. Add mint or basil, salt and pepper; stir to combine.

2. Add avocado, leftover meat or chicken, cucumbers, tomatoes and green olives; shake gently Add cheese and lettuce; shake. Test and adjust seasoning as necessary. Cut the pita slices in half, open the pocket and fill each half with salad. Do not overfill or the pita will tear.

Source: Adapted from “Melissa’s Everyday Cooking with Organic Produce” by Cathy Thomas (Wiley, $ 29.95)

Ina Chicken Salad Sandwiches

The fresh tarragon chicken salad is another favorite. The subtle anise flavor of tarragon breathes new life into this classic salad. Sometimes I add chopped dried cranberries or thick chopped roasted almonds. Or if I feel a little naughty, I add crispy bacon strips or avocado to the sandwich when I add the layer of lettuce.

Performance: 4 to 5 sandwiches


About 4 cups 3/4 inch cubes, cooked and chilled chicken, or 4 raw boneless skinless chicken breasts for roasting

Extra virgin olive oil (if roasted from scratch)

Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper

3/4 cup mayonnaise

1 1/2 tablespoons chopped fresh tarragon leaves (do not substitute dried tarragon; use fresh basil or parsley if you do not have fresh tarragon)

1 cup celery cut into small cubes (2 stalks)

8 to 10 slices of seven-grain bread or square bread

1 package of baby lettuces, see cook’s notes

Cook’s Notes: If you use very large chicken breasts, you may need a little more mayonnaise and tarragon. I prefer the baby vegetable mix that also contains fresh herbs.


1. Use cooked chicken leftovers, or to start from scratch, preheat oven to 350 degrees. Place the chicken breasts skin-side up on a rimmed baking sheet and rub with olive oil. Sprinkle with salt and pepper. Grill 35 to 45 minutes or until chicken is cooked through. Set aside to cool.

2. When the chicken is cold, remove and discard the skin and bones; Cut chicken into 3/4 inch cubes. Put the chicken in a bowl and add mayonnaise (reserve 1 to 2 tablespoons spread on the bread), tarragon, celery, 2 teaspoons of salt and 1 teaspoon of pepper. Mix well.

3. To assemble, spread a little mayonnaise on half of the bread slices, top with chicken and lettuce salad. Top with remaining bread slices. Cut in half and serve.

Source: Ina Garten’s “Barefoot Countess at Home” (Clarkson Potter, $ 35)

Lettuce Wrapped Egg Salad Sandwiches

These days, boiled eggs are standard dishes in our fridge. They’re a handy snack and a welcome addition to salads, sandwiches, and pickled pickles. Instead of the traditional mayonnaise-based egg salad, I prefer plain yogurt as the backbone of our egg salad sandwiches. The concoction is delicious, it is used between slices of rustic toasted bread or it is served as an open sandwich, but to vary the rhythm (or when there is no bread on hand), I like to put it in a sturdy lettuce leaf, either a butter lettuce leaf or red leaf lettuce, and fold it taco-style.

Performance: 4 servings (yield depends on the size of the lettuce leaves)

Hold the carbs. Egg salad can be placed on red leaves or butter lettuce, which can be folded and eaten taco-style. (Photo by Curt Norris)


5 large eggs

2 1/2 tablespoons plain nonfat yogurt and more if needed.

2 tablespoons finely chopped fresh dill

Coarse salt and freshly ground pepper to taste

1/2 teaspoon grated lemon zest (colored peel portion)

Leaves of red leaf lettuce or butter lettuce, the number varies according to the size of the leaf

Optional garnish: Chopped chives


1. To cook eggs hard: Place eggs in small saucepan with cold water to cover for 1 inch. Place on high heat. When the water boils, cover and remove from the heat. Let the eggs sit covered for 12 minutes. Drain and run cold water on the eggs. When it’s cold enough to handle, crack and peel in cold water, place it in an airtight container, and refrigerate.

2. In a medium bowl, combine the yogurt, dill, salt, pepper, and zest; stir to combine. Cut the eggs into thick pieces and add them to the yogurt mixture; stir to combine. Test and adjust seasoning as needed and add more yogurt if necessary to achieve a creamy consistency.

3. Cover each lettuce leaf (or stack two leaves if flimsy) with egg salad. Top with chopped chives, if desired, and fold the taco style.

Omelette wrap with cabbage and Asian dressing

These wraps are a delicious way to use leftover cooked meat or poultry. Shredded salmon is also a tasty option. I love the way the mayonnaise seasoning adds personality to the dish. They are Asian notes augmented with the addition of soy sauce, toasted sesame oil and dried red chili flakes, in addition to the aromatic advantage of orange or tangerine zest. Please note that red and green cabbage varieties are required on the ingredient list. Please feel free to use whatever cabbage you have on hand.

Leftovers of meat, chicken or fish can be transformed by mixing them with cabbage and Asian dressing and rolling everything into a tortilla to make a crispy wrap. (Photo by Nick Koon)

Performance: 4 large wraps



1 cup mayonnaise

1 tablespoon soy sauce

Zest of 1 orange, about 1 tablespoon

2 tablespoons of fresh orange juice

2 teaspoons of sesame oil

1/8 teaspoon dried red chili flakes


4 large flour tortillas

1 cup shredded green cabbage

1 cup shredded red cabbage

Approximately 3/4 cup cooked chicken or beef breast, cut into thin strips or diced, see meatless tip

1 cup snow peas or sugar peas, wireless, each cut into 3 longitudinal strips

1/4 cup daikon, grated and peeled

1 medium avocado, peeled, pitted, cut into 1/4 inch wide slices

4 green onions, roots cut, halved lengthwise

4 to 8 coriander stems

Coarse salt and freshly ground pepper to taste


1. Place dressing ingredients in small bowl; stir to combine. Spread enough dressing on a tortilla to thinly cover the entire surface. Place 1/4 cabbage in the bottom half of the tortilla; Place 1/4 of each remaining ingredient on the cabbage, adding salt and pepper to taste. Roll up as tight as possible, starting at the bottom edge, folding the ends (to fit the contents) to half of the rolled tortilla. Finish rolling up. Give it a gentle push to seal. Cut in half crosswise and place on a plate.

2. Repeat with the remaining ingredients.

Meatless Tip: These wraps are delicious meatless, so skip the chicken. If desired, add firm Asian flavored tofu cubes.

Source: Adapted from “Melissa’s Everyday Cooking with Organic Produce” by Cathy Thomas (Wiley, $ 29.95)