The great bacon butty vote

The votes are in.

We asked whether people preferred their bacon butty with ketchup, brown sauce, neither, or as the mood took them.

First of all thanks to everyone who voted – this was only my second blog poll and I’m pleased to have increased the voting level by 350% (from 4 to 14 – ah well). As the week progressed I watched the poll avidly and the ‘brown sauce’ gang got off to a flying start picking up many of the early votes. But ketchup caught up as the week progressed just nudging ahead at the final count.

The results were:

Ketchup: 42% (6 votes)
Brown Sauce: 35% (5 votes)
Neither: 7% (1 vote)
Go with the mood: 14% (2 votes)

Not in the least scientific with such a small electorate but it did make me wonder whether the red’s vs the brown’s had anything in common other than their choice of sauce (boys/girls, north/south, working class/posh). Perhaps for another poll another day. 

And a couple of quotes that were sent to me direct:

“But I have my bacon butty with brown and red and there isn’t such an option?!”

“…it’s “a no brainer”. When I think of it, I’m about as likely to vote Tory as I am to put red sauce on a bacon sandwich.”

Well there’s no accounting for taste is there but thanks for letting us know.

Oh and by the way it’s ‘Bacon Connoisseur’s Week’ from 16 March (as spotted on Aidan Brooks: Trainee Chef) – like we need an excuse to eat bacon?

A good bacon butty

For those of you unfamiliar with the term ‘butty’ the OED defines it as follows:

butty (also buttie) noun (pl. butties) informal, chiefly N. English a filled or open sandwich: a bacon butty. – ORIGIN mid 19th cent.: from BUTTER+-Y.

Or perhaps think about Ken Dodd for a moment and the jam butty mines – or maybe don’t. Also, of course, there are chip butties and cheese butties. In essence any kind of sandwich can be called a butty although I’m not sure you’d apply the term to something filled with chicken and avocado or crayfish and rocket or cucumber… there’s a thought a cucumber butty – a new slant on afternoon tea.

Anyway back on the bacon butty trail – this morning I had a great example rustled up for breakfast from some beer cured back bacon, some sautéed portobello mushrooms, a good dollop of ketchup (my favourite Stokes Real Ketchup – yum) and 2 slices of properly chewy wholemeal

It was great.


But then I’m probably biased as I made it.

The dangers of dreaming of burgers

Sometimes you just NEED to have a burger in a bun for your supper. Well yesterday that was me.

A quick search in the freezer revealed some organic beef burgers that seemed to fit the bill – each quite small so it wouldn’t count as sheer greed but only mild gluttony to have two. 

So out they came to be defrosted during the day and sit winking at me from the counter each time I passed. I thought carefully about what condiments and sides should accompany them to add to the experience.  I spooled through ideas in my head remembering previous winning combinations and all the while the anticipation was building.

At last I settled on an ‘open burger’  – only 1 bun between two burgers so there would be no ‘lid’. Off I set to get some buns, choice was limited and I had to settle for wholemeal floured rolls (perhaps at this point I should have spotted that things might be about to go wrong but no I continued to think I was building the dream burger I craved).

Back home the burgers were cooked on very hot chargrill pan for about 5 minutes per side, each of the two sides of the bun was given a different treatment – one had mayo, one ketchup (find both of them at the Stokes brand of Essfoods) – and the side orders of saute portobello mushrooms and grilled baby plum tomatoes duly prepared. Then the whole things was rapidly assembled and whisked to the table to be greedily devoured.  

But something had gone wrong – perhaps not very wrong – after all I still managed to eat everything but some how it just didn’t cut it. The bread was tasteless and dry, the burger tasteless and kind of watery – its texture was fine but there was just nothing to the whole thing – no zing, no nice beefy flavour, no soft but fresh tasting bread effect. To be fair the mayo and the ketchup and the sides were great but instead of supporting a strong main act they were left to hold up the whole show on their own!

So the problem – well I can only think that the burgers didn’t stand up to the freezing very well on this occasion.  I’ve had the same burgers before both fresh and defrosted and they have been pretty good – not as good as if you made them yourself but there isn’t always time for that kind of thing.  And as for the buns well maybe wholemeal just doesn’t work with burgers – I love wholemeal bread but it doesn’t seem to do it on the burger front.

Or just perhaps, the fact I had been dreaming of perfect burgers all day meant nothing would live up to the expectation!