Ah, the Costco trip. It’s so much a part of the bachelor lifestyle that, when it happens, one wonders how one lived the past year without it.
It’s a simple narrative: ‘rents come to town, ‘rents have a car and a card, ‘rents load it all up, and the bachelor pad transforms into a horn of plenty for some months to come.
I’ve squandered the trip in the past with absurdly poor shopping choices. A number of years ago, all three Weiss children were treated to the trip at once, and my main score was a quantity of raisins that took me years to consume. While my sisters unloaded industrial-size packages of Pam, olive oil, paper towels and sponges, I had…raisins. Not that I’m not grateful for same, just quite regretful.
But no more, faithful readers. This trip was a Costco trip to put any other to shame. A massive quantity of goods, all useful, all in appropriate amounts, with a sufficient variety to make storage and efficient use possible.
Truly, if you’re seeking a Costco guide in your next trip, try and see if you can get me. You’ll lose a seat in the car that you could’ve used for storage, but it’ll be a relative waste with what your puny mortal sensibilities will lead you to do.
Today, I declare for all: I am the King of the Mountain (of Food).
The first few days after a Costco trip — while fresh produce and baked goods are still fresh, and the massive quantity and variety of additional elements are at their most unknown — are always a conondrum to the bachelor. Do I just eat an entire jar of kalamata olives for lunch? How many of (insert perishable) is too many? If I’m too full to stand, but not full enough to pass out, am I in the clear?
And for your faithful guide, to whom nothing is ever so worth purchasing as freshly baked croissants. The purchased dozen now stands at a lonely two. A good many were chain-eaten plain; a select few became a gorgeous dinner.
I still remember the lunch-time, a good few years ago, when a group of friends sat down to open their sandwiches from the campus bagel shop, and one friend showed us a world of unimaginable delights: from his styrofoam package, he removed a tuna sandwich, but not one placed on any mere bagel, but a crisp, beautiful croissant.
Oh, how I rejoiced in breafasts subsequent, to pay such a measly sum for such wondrous joy, a sandwich that carried the key to happiness.
So, with a portion of the leftovers from my mid-day binge, I treated the ladyfriend to the grilled cheese — croissant-style. This Costco Croissanwich — made with Vidalio onions, red bell peppers, white button mushrooms and feta also purchased in abundance — had textures, flavors, aromas, and wonderfulness that you didn’t know grilled cheese sandwiches could produce.
Herewith, a recipe:
Makes 4 sandwiches.
4 croissants, sliced in half along the equator.
1/2 Vidalio onion, diced
1/2 red bell pepper, diced.
3 large white button mushrooms, sliced in half lengthwise and then thinly widthwise.
Roughly 3 ounces grated Swiss (emmentaler) cheese.
1 tablespoon, feta cheese.
1/2 teaspoon, dried parsley.
1/4 teaspoon, dried oregano.
1 tablespoon, butter.
On one small pan over high heat, sautee onions, then red bell peppers and then mushrooms. Cut the heat, add salt, pepper, feta and herbs.
Assemble the sandwich: croissant bottom, grated Swiss cheese, vegetable mix, then more grated Swiss cheese, and the croissant top.
Put a second pan that fits well with the first over medium heat, and add 1/4 of the butter. When the butter’s mostly browned, place one sandwich in the pan, then take the first pan and place it on top of the sandwich, and press down for 30 seconds; flip the sandwich, and do the same for another 30 seconds.
Split them down the center to serve.
You can’t deal with this deliciousness.