Tips for top sandwiches from Nellie Nichols, creative director of Hazlewood Foods and the original driving force behind some of Pret a Manger's wild and wonderful sandwiches.
- Don't use one texture like tuna and mayonnaise - which has the texture of baby food. Give your sandwich crunch and texture with lettuce, cucumber or celery.
A sandwich should be brightly coloured. The best sandwiches should look like a traffic light, they shouldn't be grey or brown.
Mushrooms - a problem ingredient. Remember, there's no such thing as an attractive mushroom, not for sandwiches: grey or brown lead to trouble.
Avocados - they can go brown. Avoid ingredients that can change, like bananas. Apples go brown but they can be dipped in things to stop colouration.
Bread must be as fresh and as interesting as possible. Bread with seeds is good, try all sorts of things to make your sandwich look and taste delicious.
Sun-dried tomatoes are over-used. I'd rather be the person being first to use something. Do sun-dried tomatoes really deliver that well? Sun-blushed tomatoes are juicier and sweeter and not so salty.
The best sandwiches in the world should be found in the pub trade because of the regional element. Offer the best ingredients your region has to offer. Are you next to an organic farm or the coast? Have you got an Aberdeen Angus beef herd up the road? Use your imagination. And remember, it's not rocket science.
Eat out - the more you see new ingredients, the better.
90 per cent of what I try I'll change, modify or abandon.
Is there a 'wow' factor? If there isn't, start again.
The Top Ten UK Sarnie Ingredients
- 1: Chicken
- 2: Cheese
- 3: Tuna
- 4: Ham
- 5: Egg
- 6: Prawn
- 7: BLT
- 8: Beef
- 9: Turkey
- 10: Ham & cheese