Summer is made for sandwiching. Portable, picnic-able, ideal for lazy days at the beach or to sustain you on hiking adventures in the hills. A sandwich can be as simple or complex as you want to make it.
We asked the Black Sheep Restaurants family of chefs for their go-to fillings and they threw out some classic combos as well as a few curveballs. It’s clear that your upbringing plays a big part in your choice of bread-stuffing and our band of culinary heroes come from all over. Read on to find out what these experts put between their sliced white – surprisingly enough, it’s not all foie gras and lobster tails.
Palash Mitra, New Punjab Club
“I spent a long time living in the UK so I know my way around a sandwich. British people will put anything in bread and I’ve learned to really love sandwiches, I could eat them on death row. My favourite to make at home is ham and cheese. I buy a crusty baguette from my local bakery in Sai Kung and fill that with mature cheddar, slices of ham and some thinly sliced onions and chilli – a bit like the onion and chilli salad at New Punjab Club. But I’m also partial to a cornmeal bap with streaky bacon, Cumberland sausage plus ketchup AND mayonnaise. It might not sound very sophisticated but don’t knock it until you try it.”
Jowett Yu, Ho Lee Fook
“As Bondi hipster as this sounds, I have avocado on toast every day. I smash my avos onto toasted pumpernickel multigrain rye which I like to dress with a bit of olive oil, salt, pepper, lemon juice, and dukkah.”
Steve Nguyen, Chôm Chôm
“When I’m home the sandwich is my go-to comfort meal. And when summer is in full swing and it’s time to pull out the barbecue, I’m making steak sandwiches every time. I start it with a quality piece of ribeye, seasoned liberally with olive oil and sea salt and lots of cracked black pepper. Then I sear that bad boy medium-rare, let it rest until the juices have settled throughout the meat and slice it thin. Then I take a crusty French baguette, butter it and grill until lightly toasted. Grainy Dijon mustard and beef are the best of friends. Spread the mustard liberally then pile on the beef. Finally add in some peppery rocket, close it up and enjoy.
“I tend not to eat a lot of carbs but when I do one of my favourite combos is prosciutto cotto ham with Swiss cheese or white cheddar in bread – I’m not fussy about what kind – grilled in butter until the cheese is properly melted. The best way to elevate a simple sandwich like this is with a dash of Dijon or Pommery mustard.”
Bao La, Le Garçon Saigon
“It all depends on the bread-vessel. Different vessels call for different ingredients. If I have a baguette at home I make a variation of a banh mi with cha lua, a common Vietnamese sausage, topped with a fried egg, cracked black pepper and Maggi seasoning. With sliced bread, I think it’s best to go simple with smashed boiled eggs, mayo and lettuce. But when I’m really missing Australia, all I crave is a Vegemite and cheddar toasted sandwich on soft white bread. Hot, cheesy nostalgia.”
If you’re after a different kind of sandwich, have a read of our story about bunny chow, Durban curry dens and the power of the curry-filled half loaf.