Lee and Rachel Cecchi put a gourmet twist on traditional beach fare.
THERE ARE A few essential ingredients for a truly successful Marin beach day: sunscreen, a sweatshirt and a really great sandwich. Fortunately, The Lunch Box with its artful array of gourmet sandwiches is mere steps from the Stinson sand (and the neighboring Village Green Park, to which the place willingly delivers). Founded in 2011 by culinary couple Lee and Rachel Cecchi — he a graduate of San Francisco’s Culinary Academy and former mentee of Duilio Valenti; she a Frantoio co-worker and the daughter of Wendy DiPaolo of Willow Camp Catering in West Marin — The Lunch Box has a menu packed with fresh and innovative sandwiches like the Salmon Po’boy, the BLT with almond-crusted tomatoes and the Stinson Beef, featuring roasted beef, whiskey onion horseradish pimento aioli (an ambitiously yummy sounding sauce), frisée lettuce and melted Swiss cheese. You’ll also find a selection of salads and, Thursday and Friday evenings, a full taqueria menu with fresh tacos, empanadas, burritos and such. Aside from beachside eats, Lee and Rachel offer event catering, bringing their simple California aesthetic to weddings and large-scale events and even delivering to film sets. Here the duo shares a recipe for an easily crafted — but unsurprisingly elevated — summer sandwich: The Veggie. lunchboxmarin.com
- ½ bunch asparagus
- 2 zucchini, julienned
- 1 handful green beans
- 2 Meyer lemons
- 1 shallot
- ½ bunch parsley
- ½ cup olive oil
- 1 red beet
- 1 cup goat cheese
- 2 Bordenave’s sweet French rolls, halved and lightly toasted
- 1 bunch frisée lettuce Salt and pepper
- Lightly blanch asparagus, zucchini and green beans in salt water.
- Bring lemons, shallot and parsley to a boil in olive oil. Steep in oil for 5 minutes; let cool.
- Add veggie mixture to the liquid to marinate.
- Wrap beet in tinfoil and roast at 375°F until well done, approximately 1½ to 2 hours depending on size; let cool completely.
- Combine beet with goat cheese in food processor until smooth.
- Liberally spread the beet and goat cheese mixture on both halves of both rolls.
- Distribute vegetable mixture evenly between the two sandwiches.
- Add a generous amount of frisée.
- Finish with olive oil and salt and pepper to taste.