Apparently, according to Jonathan (aka @Browners) who writes a Sandwichist slot, its National British Sandwich Week this week. Right. Yes. You already knew that didn’t you?
Anyway Mr Browners is fed up with pre-packed sandwiches and I’m fed-up with look-a-like Pret’s all over the place. Pret was good once (honestly) back in the days when it was just starting and only had a few stores, it was a revelation as well as independent. Like many good things they expanded and expanded then they needed big corporate money. I guess there might a place for that kind of thing when you visit a town you know nothing about and are desperate to eat and have no time to find real recommendations – it makes acceptable food on such occasions, but day to day it get a little dull.
But there are LOADS of independent sandwich shops out there (some good, some bad) plus you could always try your hand at making something yourself. Browners asked for people to go in search of great sandwiches – so we did.
I decided to do not just one but two sandwiches. One from a shop, one homemade.
First up the shop one. Its from Caradell in Red Lion Street, WC2. Caradell is a nice little deli close by where I used to work so I’ve been there often but having moved on job wise I’d not been in nearly a year – time to try it again. What I always liked about the place is that its busy, service is fast, the sandwiches are made to order and, most of all, pretty much everything is a variation on the classic ham and cheese. Well that might not be quite right but in my view you can’t easily beat ham (or salami, or chorizo, or jamon etc etc) and cheese so maybe I just home in on those choices. On this occasion I went for proper British cooked ham off the bone with Emmenthal (no British cheeses in sight boooooo) with Cumberland Sauce – on bloomer of course.
As you can see its pretty chunky and not for the delicate – its quite hard to eat (all their sandwiches are packed full of filling). It was a great combo but I’d prefer there to be some British cheese as an option. The Cumberland Sauce was nice and tangy, so good stuff all round. At £4.60 its pricey (but it is big and its quality ingredients) and in my view worth it. I can also vouch that their other ham/cheese variations are also excellent.
And on to today when I decided to rustle up a quick sandwich myself. I went for all English using Village Bakery Pain de Campagne (sourdough), Hawkston cheese from Suffolk (a bit like mild Lancashire), glass grown tomatoes from the Isle of Wight (via Waitrose) and some Stokes Lemon Mayonnaise. Yum – and probably not £4.60!
6 thoughts on “National British Sandwich Week”
This has me thinking about the Chog Knocker sandwich. Or was this just something we had in my family, my mother was from Bristol so it might be a Bristolian phrase. A Chog Knocker was made of the two end crusts of the loaf and typically filled with very good cheddar and home made chutney or Branston Pickle. Not for the faint hearted or those with dodgy teeth.
Brilliant stuff. I am very partial indeed to a ham and cheese sandwich. Especially with a spot of pickle or chutney.
What a shame they didn’t have any English cheese. But Ementhal isn’t a bad alternative. I’m looking forward to hearing more about your sourdough.
Grethic: Um no never heard of Chog Knocker but sounds nice – I like the crusts tho i know many don’t.
Browners: Ementhal was good but you’d think they had a good cheddar on offer. Ah well.
Mmm, I love a good sandwich. Wish I knew about some of your cheeses and ingredients (lemon mayonnaise)… I take it there is lemon in it?
The Sandwichist post is now live on Londonist.
Thanks again for your review. I really can’t get enough of sandwiches!
Hi Karen: There are loads of good cheeses now in the UK, I’m going to be blogging about some Suffolk ones so so look out for that. The mayonnaise is a nice thick proper one and it has lemon zest added. Its nice and zingy but not overpowering. The people who make it do quite a few flavours and I love them so you’ll probably see them popping up on the blog too.
Browners: Hope the afternoon tea event went well. I really enjoyed the chance to blog about something different so thanks for organising the event. If I find more good sandwich venues I’ll let you know.
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