I’ve come a long way since my culinary inclinations as a kid, where I’d come home from school to a Miracle Whip Sandwich, my snack of choice. A little older now, my palate’s developed with my various foodiesque life experiences, and for my next #DIYSandwich, I was long overdue in proving I could put something appetizing together without anyone holding my hand.
The Internet’s awash with a plethora of recipes, and without a clear idea of where to start for my next sandwich-making session, I went to my social network to see what they had in mind!
This month’s Dempster’s sandwich gave me a little lesson in supply, demand, and the art of improvisation.
Originally, we wanted to rock some mean burgers. Sarah and I are part of a crew that holds semi-regular Danforth Dinners, a dinner party for 8-10 where we take turns hosting to give everyone a taste of what the group has to offer. Though not everyone lives in East York anymore (rumours of a St. Clair Supper are in the air…), we still try to keep up, regardless of the newest—and likely most difficult—member sometimes wanting us to do otherwise.
So, knowing that time’s often limited for parents, our friends give us the easy job—”just bring the buns”. Well—everyone in town must’ve had the same idea now that our weather’s more promising than the horror we dealt with for 6 months because no matter where we looked, we couldn’t find Dempster’s Deluxe Hamburger Buns anywhere! We checked six stores, and everyone must’ve been out barbecuing in 10° weather because they were out of stock like the hot toy at Christmas!
So that didn’t work out—I mean, obviously, we still had burgers, we’d be stupid not to—but with some other bread we’d never heard of before to encase the deliciousness we knew we were to get.
With my delicious burger dream reduced to crumbs and the buns to hold them mysteriously absent wherever I looked, I needed a new sandwich idea and fast; a freelancer’s deadlines wait for no man! So it was off to Plan B—thinking back to my childhood and the stuff my Mom whipped up when she was in a hurry — SLOPPY JOES.
If one thing unifies my friends and me, it’s food. Sarah’s always said that I merely eat to live—I don’t salivate at the thought of delicious meals, but let’s get one thing straight—I know delicious food when I taste it!
Since becoming a parent, I don’t get out much. Save a birthday party, I spent March largely as a shut-in, wavering from my routine of work, home and church only for trips to the parents and the dentist. While the days of luxurious ice cream and dining at 350 metres are behind me for now, it doesn’t mean I can’t eat tasty food at home!
So with my limited culinary skills, there was only one place to find a recipe that would make for amazing sandwich fare—the Internet. More specifically, Epicurious, the one-stop-shop for leaving your taste buds senseless! Without further ado, let’s drive into a pork sandwich that’ll knock your socks off!!!
For the past 6 years, I’ve had a unique job that sees a site change every 6 months or so. Most recently, I was banishedexiled transferred to Yonge & Finch, where I quickly found the lunch options rather… limited*.
So to save money and keep me healthy, Sarah helped me fall in love with the sandwich all over again.
*From 2009 through 2011, with a work team that was 2/3 Asian, lunches mostly consisted of dim sum, sushi or Korean BBQ. Let’s just say we overdid it and I’ve yet to recover.
The Poor, Poor Tale of the Sandwich
The sandwich gets a poor rep among the foodies of the world, preferring to nosh on more delicate fare, like foie gras, canapés and salads with balsamic reductions.
But I’m a meat and potatoes kind of guy, returning to the same comfort food time and again, when I want something to eat.
More than once, Sarah’s worried that I’d get tired of spicy Italian sausage, old cheddar cheese, Miracle Whip and mustard on an Italian bun, but two months in and I still gnaw away on them merrily while working on spreadsheets!
As tasty as that is, though, it’s not nearly enough to make it Canada’s Most Epic Sandwich.