Water cress sandwiches are so superb that their creation can be a high art. Variations are, of course, innumerable, but the following may give you a few ideas. Nearly everyone may have a hand at these, for water cress (Nasturtium) grows wild over most of North America. Furthermore, it is available the year around except when the waters in which it flourishes are frozen.
Even when you mix water cress with egg, there are a number of ways of going about it. First, provide mealy, appetizing, hard-cooked eggs by keeping them simmering, completely covered with water, for 8 to 10 minutes, depending on size. Do not boil. At the end of this time, remove from the heat and plunge into cold water. Crack the shells slightly as the eggs cool so they will peel more easily. For one variation, chop 4 hard-cooked eggs. Mix them with 2 tablespoons chopped water cress, 1/2 teaspoon salt, and 1/8 teaspoon paprika. Spread between buttered bread halves. If you are having a party, cut off the crust and shape the sandwiches into triangles or strips. Or for a robust lunch, eat them “as is” perhaps with whole wheat bread.
For an even smoother filler, you can combine the butter directly with the finely chopped eggs, first letting it soften at room temperature and then mixing and crushing everything to a smooth paste. Season to taste with salt, grated onion, chopped chives, mustard, or with what you will. Then spread on one slice of bread. Top liberally with sprigs of water cress and cover with a second slice.
Cream cheese and bacon can also come into the act. To go with a small package of the former, you’ll need 1/2 cup of diced, cooked bacon. Start this in a cold frypan and cook over low heat, tilting the pan so the grease will flow away from the tanning, drying bits. Beat cheese, bacon, 1/8 teaspoon salt, 1/8 teaspoon paprika, and 3/4 cup of chopped water cress to a paste along with 2 tablespoons of light cream. This spread is effective on any kind of bread or toast, but for something special try it sometime on thin slices of rye.
Or if your hunger precludes all such preparations, just butter both slices of bread plentifully so the cress does not make the sandwich limp and soggy. Fill liberally with chopped water cress sprinkled with lemon juice.