What do you think about when you hear ‘American cuisine’? You think about hamburgers, right? Come on, you can tell me… No need to be ashamed about that. I know it was the first thing that came to my mind but then again I didn’t want to immediately go the obvious route so I started searching on American recipes on google and was – quite frankly – amazed at the variety of dishes that popped up. Most dishes are quite familiar, such as coleslaw, corndog, hotdog, cornsoup or what to think of pumpkin soup or clam chowder? And then there are the lesser known dishes from the indigenous people of America, the Indians. I kept looking at dishes like bird brain stew or walrus flipper soup… Not what I really wanted to make although it sounded intriguing but finding walrus flippers or bird brains here seemed a little bit unlikely!
I then considered making something with pumpkin but I’m not a big fan of pumpkin soup and a lot of the other dishes I found were all combined origins such as pumpkin risotto and even though it is autumn I still felt it was early to be making pumpkin dishes. So back to the drawing board again and then all of a sudden it hit me; club sandwich !!
I’ve been doing a sort of club sandwich test over at De Glazen Vork for a while now. It involves me eating a lot of club sandwiches at different locations around Holland. Club sandwich might have its origin in the US, it has certainly been fully adopted by the Dutch. There are not a lot of cafe’s or eateries who do not have a club sandwich on the menu. They range from truly horrible to fantastic and anything in between. I started this ‘test’ out of fun really… I love a good club sandwich and for years during our travels whenever I saw a club sandwich on a menu I just had to order one.
Mostly out of curiosity, as I’ve had my share of really really bad sandwiches. Let me just say that a club sandwich in a shady little restaurant in Madagascar consists of VERY old and stale bread with two slices of dodgy ham, not to mention a equally terrible club sandwich somewhere in Asia with soggy bread (I prefer the old and stale!) and unidentifiable stuff in between. I didn’t eat that one as I wanted to enjoy the rest of my holiday but we did have a good laugh about the various club sandwich models around the world…
So what IS a good club sandwich? I think that probably varies but for me it should have toasted crispy bread, bacon, lettuce, chicken or turkey, tomato, a good mayo and egg. There should be three sandwich slices which are usually cut into half or quarts and served with chips or French fries or I’ve even had them with tortilla chips. The club sandwich is said to have originated in New York as early as 1899.. ( which does sound a lot earlier then 1900 don’t you think?)
And funny enough I came to the conclusion that while I must have had literally hundreds of club sandwiches around the world I had never made one myself. It seemed only fitting that for the Monthly Mingle of this month, hosted by my dear friend Jenn from Jenncuisine, I should choose to make a club sandwich. Not a very complicated recipe but my version of this American classic! I toasted the bread – obviously – and you can read in the recipe what I put on it. I did make my own mustard mayonnaise to go along with it which I think is part of the great flavor this sandwich had. If this sandwich would be in my test it would definitely be the winner so far!
Classic Club Sandwich with a twist
Prep Time: 10 min
Cook Time: 5 mins
Total Time: 15 min
- 6 slices of white square bread (we call it casinowhite)
- 6 cherry tomatoes
- 4 slices of bacon
- 4 slices of old goatcheese (or other cheese to your liking)
- salad leaves
- mustard mayonnaise
- sundried tomatoes
- 4-5 ham slices
- 2 eggs
Start by toasting your bread and the heat a pan on high to fry the bacon until crisp. Leave to drain on kitchen paper. Boil your eggs the way you like them. I would suggest not to make them to soft.
Slice your sundried tomatoes, the regular tomatoes and your boiled eggs. Set aside until you are ready to build your sandwich.
Wash the lettuce and start by taking one of your toasted sandwiches and putting some salad on top. You can ofcourse build your sandwich any way you like, but I started with lettuce on the first toast, added sundried tomatoes and regular tomatoes on top. Added hamslices there, some drops of the mayonaise and topped it with another slice of bread. On that bread I put the goatcheese, then a few more slices of tomato, the egg, the bacon and spread some more mayonnaise on the top of the last sandwich. Put that last piece of toast on top of the pile, with mayo side down and you're done! You can enjoy this with crisps or fries but I always think a club sandwich is filling enough on it's own!