Some assembly required
June 19, 2012 3:43 AM   Subscribe

I like foods that require assembly of delicious and interesting components while eating. At the moment, I'm also not interested in cooking. Do you have any ideas?

Examples of recent hits:

prosciutto + feta + bread + apple
Stilton + bread + pear
bagel + cream cheese + salmon + capers + red onion
cheddar + mango + crackers

Accompanying wine is optional, but it's a nice addition. The idea is nice, interesting, pretty, pleasant, leisurely--but still really low effort to put together, no cooking*, and not a lot of dishes to wash. The above all involve just a knife and cutting board.

*a quick chutney or something might be okay
posted by A Terrible Llama to Food & Drink (38 answers total) 94 users marked this as a favorite
Apple slices + peanut butter + cinnamon (+ honey)
posted by backwards guitar at 3:57 AM on June 19, 2012

(cheese+fruit/veg+bread/cracker+(optional)vinegar/other dressing) is a pretty good basic formula for interesting combinations.

chickpeas+fresh greens+lemon juice

posted by bardophile at 4:25 AM on June 19, 2012

Best answer: Smoked salmon + cream cheese + pear + cracker. Red onion optional.
posted by slateyness at 4:30 AM on June 19, 2012

Blue cheese + celery.
posted by Ziggy500 at 4:35 AM on June 19, 2012

+1 for hummus.

When I'm feeling low energy I tend to reach for some version of a ploughman's lunch.
These days it involves hummus+pita+pickles+sharp cheddar. For dessert options you can't go wrong with cream cheese+blueberries+graham crackers.
posted by whowearsthepants at 4:36 AM on June 19, 2012 [1 favorite]

Summer rolls? I get all the ingredients pre-cut, because I'm lazy, but then it's just spring roll wrapper + carrots + cucumber + chicken or shrimp + lettuce + herbs and I dip them in peanut sauce.
posted by punchtothehead at 4:58 AM on June 19, 2012 [4 favorites]

Here's a completely scrumptious salad. Pears, walnuts, chicory, blue cheese, light yoghurt or similar dressing (not too much).
posted by londongeezer at 5:32 AM on June 19, 2012

Turkish breakfast! Bread, cheese (peynir is traditional but I don't know where to get it outside of Turkey - feta is a good substitute), tomato slices, cucumber slices, fruit (or preserves), yogurt, eggs (hard boiled) and olives. Plus whatever else you've got around.
posted by mskyle at 5:37 AM on June 19, 2012 [5 favorites]

Get a bag of romaine hearts*. When you want a salad, tale out one heart and hack it up, discard the outer gross leaves and the stem.

Toss in sliced tomato, or strawberries, or pear, or apple. Add a handful of candied pecans or walnuts. Choose a cheese that tastes good with your previous selections, top with chicken or shrimp or tofu or whatever and then dress the whole mess.

Hearts don't get slimy and gross nearly as quickly as precut salad mixes.
posted by bilabial at 5:45 AM on June 19, 2012 [1 favorite]

bread + peanut butter + honey

crackers + chevre + fig spread or prunes

rice + salsa

pita bread + nutella + strawberries

pita bread + sujuk (spicy beef sausage you can get from most Middle Eastern and Mediterranean grocers) + yogurt + cucumbers + peppers, onions, lettuce, hummus, whatever you want

any dipping bread + olive oil + herbs + chopped garlic
posted by raztaj at 5:55 AM on June 19, 2012

tomato + mozzarella + basil

Tomato + feta + cucumber + red onion + optional olives

I dress both of these with a vinagrette (balsamic for the first, lemon for the second), or you can dip in a little side-cup of vinaigrette if dressing is a step too far.
posted by Eyebrows McGee at 6:06 AM on June 19, 2012 [1 favorite]

This is my favorite kind of meal!

wheat thins + tomato + basil + sharp cheddar (mozzarella is traditional, but cheddar is better)

crackers + feta + sundried tomato pesto

figs (dried or fresh) + blue cheese + honey + nuts

grapes + watermelon + feta (feeling fancy? stab a series of mini-kebabs with toothpicks)
posted by rebekah at 6:16 AM on June 19, 2012 [2 favorites]

Top-quality kosher salami + coarse-grained mustard. Gherkins make a nice accompaniment.
posted by Faint of Butt at 6:29 AM on June 19, 2012 [1 favorite]

Prosciutto, fig and cheese sandwich (an actual recipe here)
posted by ephemerista at 6:34 AM on June 19, 2012 [1 favorite]

sardine + avocado + hot sauce + whole grain flatbread
posted by neroli at 6:37 AM on June 19, 2012

Lettuce wraps! Some of my fav:
Lettuce leaf + pepper jack + tomato + avocado
Lettuce leaf + hummus + long slices of carrots + bell pepper
Lettuce leaf + pinto beans + avocado + hot sauce (mmm Valentina)

How about fruit?
Mango (or oranges or coconut or watermelon) + chili powder + spritz of lime + salt
posted by xicana63 at 6:50 AM on June 19, 2012 [2 favorites]

Peanut butter and hot pepper jelly.
posted by Ideefixe at 6:52 AM on June 19, 2012

Sushi. All you need to "cook" is the rice, and the rest you assemble at the table.
posted by valkyryn at 7:22 AM on June 19, 2012

Best answer: Prosciutto wrapped melon pieces (cantaloupe works well)
Dates stuffed with cream cheese, topped with a walnut half if desired
Thick, hearty crackers (try Wasa) topped with ricotta, nuts, and a drizzle of honey
(By the way, the recipes section on the Wasa website has a lot of good crispbread topping ideas)
posted by beyond_pink at 7:23 AM on June 19, 2012 [1 favorite]

You can make tacos like this. Buy premade taco meat in a microwaveable tub, shredded cheese, shredded lettuce, and tortillas. If you want to go fancy, microwave some canned refried beans to smear on the tortilla before the other fillings, and/or do the same with cold sour cream. Pour bottled salsa on top and you won't miss having fresh tomatoes, or you can buy them chopped from the salad bar.
posted by vytae at 8:00 AM on June 19, 2012

I make salads with greens, coloured things, pan-toasted sunflower seeds, cheese bits, and some grilled meat. Mix it all together - voila! One-pot meal with a different mix of flavours and crunch with every mouthful.
posted by Kerasia at 8:11 AM on June 19, 2012

Seeded flat bread, soft (spreadable) goat cheese, fig spread (widely available in the cheese section of stores such as Whole Foods or Andronico's), walnuts. Optional: prosciutto.
posted by ClaudiaCenter at 8:41 AM on June 19, 2012

Stoned wheat crackers + cream cheese + pickled beets (not kidding)
Tuna + red onion + whites beans + arugula + maybe a quick dijon/olive oil dressing
Watermelon + feta + tomato + cucumber
Dates + prosciutto + blue cheese
posted by pineappleheart at 8:50 AM on June 19, 2012

ripe figs (season is coming right up); goat cheese or ricotta; honey. (fig cut in half, blop of cheese on top, honey drizzled over.)
posted by fingersandtoes at 8:56 AM on June 19, 2012

Smoked turkey slices, thinly sliced pickles and tomatoes, cheddar, sweet mustard. Rolled up in the turkey or in a tortilla depending on if you care about carbs.
posted by fingersandtoes at 8:57 AM on June 19, 2012


Chilled sliced tofu covered with chopped tomatoes and other vegetables; if possible with pickles from Japanese market. Also if possible, get handmade tofu. The Korean market near me sells wonderful creamy tofu in different vegetable flavors which is perfect for this dish.

Composed salad (think cobb salad served with ingredients laid out in areas of the plate) made with hearty ingredients such as cooked beans, roasted corn, beets. And bacon.
posted by BibiRose at 9:11 AM on June 19, 2012 [1 favorite]

There's a classic Persian appetizer that is basically pita + feta + green herbs (try cilantro, green onion, fresh parsley, etc.) -- loved it so much at a local restaurant that it became a household fave too.
posted by acm at 11:58 AM on June 19, 2012

bread/cracker + miso paste + cucumber
bread/cracker + cream cheese + thinly sliced raw garlic
thick slices of bell pepper + hummus + feta
bread + avocado & lime + manchego cheese (or any other sheep's milk cheese)
posted by aaanastasia at 1:18 PM on June 19, 2012

This might require a bit more effort than you're interested in, but you can make all kinds of interesting flavour combos in ice creams and granitas. Olive oil ice cream is really good!
posted by beepbeepboopboop at 1:33 PM on June 19, 2012

roasted chicken + brie + fresh spinach + bread/cracker of your choice.
posted by woodvine at 2:22 PM on June 19, 2012

Best answer: cracker + Parmigiano-Reggiano + Honey + Black Pepper
posted by mmascolino at 3:32 PM on June 19, 2012

Corn thins (like rice cakes) + cream cheese + salami + sliced cucumber + salt & pepper
posted by Wantok at 4:30 PM on June 19, 2012

Best answer: dark pumpernickel bread + chopped green olives + thinly sliced red onions.
posted by fifilaru at 10:32 PM on June 19, 2012

Best answer: fifilaru: "dark pumpernickel bread + chopped green olives + thinly sliced red onions."
posted by fifilaru at 10:33 PM on June 19, 2012

Response by poster: I don't want to mark best answers because there are so many great ideas and things to try out, but the items that got added to the immediate grocery list for next week were: dates, honey, parmigiano reggiano, figs, fig spread, goat cheese, good salami, Wasa crackers. Thanks everybody. Everything sounds awesome.
posted by A Terrible Llama at 4:06 PM on June 21, 2012

Try this!

It's really very good.... Best described as, fried balls of flavor explosions. And easy to put together. Also, you get everything at an Indian store if pretty much every customer or cashier would know how to get you what you want if you can't find it. You can also buy that sweet chutney instead of making the recipe, making it even easier.
posted by picarosado at 5:43 PM on June 22, 2012

I also really like, toasted bread + avocado slices + fried soft egg + stir-fried shallots (toss it in the cooling pan after the egg is done) + Japanese mayo + Ketchup/spicy mayo to your preference. Really amazing.
posted by picarosado at 5:45 PM on June 22, 2012

Thai Mien Kham is incredible!
posted by dougiedd at 6:19 PM on July 4, 2012 [1 favorite]

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