Roasted Turkey Sandwich with Caramelized Balsamic Onions, Bacon and Avocado


November 27, 2011 by Sara Kreidler

Back in August, we spent a week in Vegas for work.  I pretty much hated everything about Vegas, except that I had the most incredible meal at Craftsteak, and the best sandwich I’ve ever eaten at ‘Wichcraft.  I wasn’t acquainted with Tom Colicchio before that trip, but now I want to go to every one of his restaurants.

Back to the matter at hand: the greatest sandwich ever.  I ate ‘Wichcraft’s roasted turkey sandwich twice during my week in Vegas; I just couldn’t get enough of the combination of caramelized balsamic onions, bacon and avocado. I jotted down the ingredients the second time I ate the sandwich and thought that I would try to recreate the sandwich with this year’s leftover thanksgiving turkey.  Then I got lucky and found the Colicchio’s recipe for the sandwich on Epicurious.  I made a few small changes, but largely followed the recipe (which was not far off from the notes I had jotted down back in August), and lo and behold: the greatest sandwich ever, right in my kitchen.

Adapted from Tom Colicchio’s recipe on Epicurious

Makes 2 very large servings


  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 1 large yellow onion, thinly sliced into half moons
  • Pinch of salt and sugar
  • 1/8 cup brown sugar
  • ¼ cup balsamic vinegar
  • ¼ cup red wine vinegar
  • ½ pound bacon
  • 1 loaf ciabatta
  • ½ pound leftover roasted turkey, shredded
  • 1/3 cup mayo
  • ½ teaspoon Dijon mustard
  • 1 clove of garlic, minced
  • 2 dashes cayenne pepper
  • 1 ripe avocado, peeled and sliced


  1. Preheat oven to 350.
  2. Melt the butter in a cast iron skillet.  Add the onions, sprinkle with a pinch of salt and sugar, and cook until soft and lightly caramelized over medium low flame.  Add the brown  sugar, balsamic vinegar and red wine vinegar and stir.  Reduce liquid until syrupy, about 10 minutes.
  3. In another cast iron skillet, cook the bacon until just crisp.  Transfer cooked bacon to a paper town lined plate to drain.
  4. Cut the ciabatta in half crosswise and then cut one of the halves in half lengthwise (reserve other half of ciabatta loaf for another use).  Place the halves cut side up on a baking sheet.   Place shredded turkey evenly across the bottom half of the ciabatta.  Spread balsamic onions over the turkey to cover.  Layer bacon across the top half of the ciabatta.  Place in oven and bake for about 5-10 minutes or until the edges of the bread are golden.
  5. While the sandwich is in the oven, prepare the aioli by combining mayo, Dijon mustard, minced garlic and cayenne in a small bowl and whisking together with a fork.  Set aside.
  6. Remove sandwich from the oven.  Transfer the bacon over to the other side of the sandwich, so that it is on top of the layer of balsamic onions.  Layer the sliced avocado on top on the bacon, and spread the aioli over the top half of the sandwich (where the bacon was previously).  Put the top of the sandwich, cut in half and serve warm.

One thought on “Roasted Turkey Sandwich with Caramelized Balsamic Onions, Bacon and Avocado

  1. […] When I saw a recipe for fettuccini with balsamic delicata squash and bitter greens on The Kitchn, I got inspired.  I had a few butternut squash sitting on my counter, a big bag of kale in the fridge, and bacon from the farmer’s market in the freezer.  I was concerned that the recipe as written would be too dry, so rather than just making caramelized onions, I made balsamic caramelized onions like I did when I made the best sandwich ever. […]

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