“A sandwich is a food item, consisting of two or more slices of bread with one or more fillings between them.” – wikipedia
That’s a decidedly dreary definition for one of the darlings of deliciousness. Humble the basic sandwich might be, but it is in my opinion the greatest of foods. At its most basic, it’s a simple and fantastic way to consume foodstuffs. Yet it possesses the capability of being elevated to great culinary heights, limited only by your imagination and the ingredients you have at hand. Maybe it appeals to some ancient past life man in me. That part of my subconscious that still remembers meat cooked on an open fire and still hot wrapped in crude breads and eaten dripping between fingers and down unshaven face. It’s therefore no surprise that I decided to make a classic Shooter’s Sandwich.
A sandwich which rose to popularity in the United Kingdom during the Edwardian Period alongside such greats as the full English breakfast, the classic Shooter’s Sandwich was prepared the night before and eaten cold by hungry men out hunting or fishing in the countryside. Short on fishing waters and not the hunting sort, we settled for fueling our Christmas tree felling with the fruits of the previous evenings labour. Here’s how to make your very own Shooter’s Sandwich.
The first thing you will need for the manliest of sandwich’s is a round crusty loaf of bread. Head to your local baker, or you could do as I did and bake your own loaf, for some tips on baking bread watch this video.
Next you’ll need a couple of good steaks. A pile of mushrooms, some garlic and an onion.
Chop the onion, fungi and garlic and saute in a generous quantity of butter with herbs and spices to your taste. Lay the sauce to one side. Now rub some olive oil on the steaks and season with salt and pepper. Fry the steaks in a scalding hot pan for a minute or two on each side. The rarer the steak, the flatter it will go in the next step. Slice the top of the bread off and set aside, then remove a cavity inside the bread. Place the first hot steak inside. Next a generous amount of the mushroom sauce, as much as you can put in. Place the second steak on top of that. Then smother the top cap of bread in hot mustard and fit in place.
Now wrap the entire loaf in greaseproof paper and tie closed. Now cover that in turn with foil. Finally place the entire thing under a large weight. A giant pile of those cookbooks you haven’t used since the advent of Google should do the trick. I was lucky enough to have a book press handy. Leave overnight.
Now take it along on your manly mission, or eat it while watching the game. The Shooter’s sandwich should be eaten cold with some preserves, an onion marmalade or something of that nature.