Purely in the interests of menu development I’ve been eating rather a lot of our Old School Bacon Sandwiches recently.
I recall a quote, and for the life of me I can’t find it now, that moving a dish from one side of the world to the other means you can only ever offer a local take on it rather than replicating the original. Even for the plain old bacon sandwich that’s turned out to be true.
First off every bacon-eating nation has a different idea of what constitutes the good stuff. After that there’s the debate about the bread and condiments and so it goes on.
We decided to go with back bacon and we found a suitable supplier. We had long offered our popular BLT sandwich but for that we go with a smoked, streaky bacon, pre-cooked to crispyness. At first staff were cooking the back bacon to similar levels so we had to change that.
But back bacon here is different to back home (that’s the UK for me). It’s a little bit drier, thicker and a little bit more chewy – however we cook it. Ordinarily a bacon sandwich might be served on thick white sliced bread but to our mind the chewyness would mean the bread would tear far easier than the bacon. Better the more robust baguette. We make all our own bread so it’s always fresh. Rye and wholemeal are also available.
That dryness though means you need a generous serving of butter and for taste reasons we’ve gone with that rather than margarine. We also toast the baguette so the bread is warmed and the butter sinks in a little.
Again, to combat that slight dryness I’d suggest a generous helping of tomato ketchup for which we’ve decided there is no alternative to Heinz (Does anyone know where we can buy reasonably priced HP/Brown Sauce?). I’d also suggest it goes perfectly with a freshly squeezed orange – have the coffee afterwards.
One customer regularly requests melted cheese with his bacon sandwich and ordinarily I’d reckon that would be overkill but for some reasons the locally available cheddar with our bread and the back bacon works perfectly – again with ketchup naturally.
It’s not yet perfect. There is no perfect bacon sandwich – it’s just a quest. But it’s a lot closer.