The sandwich is a many splendored thing, and one that is too rarely given the respect that it deserves. Its origin is shrouded in the myth of a gambling aristocrat; its family tree branches every which way from melts and burgers, submarines and crustless white-bread things, to tea sandwiches and open-faced concoctions and the Atkins-fueled excuse for a true sandwich, the low-carb wrap.

A long time ago, in a summer which is dogeared in my brain as one of culinary bliss, I ate sandwiches every day. It was a sandwich on a crusty roll or piece of baguette, made with a hard, peppery, all-beef salami (my partner at the time still aspired to keep kosher), with romaine lettuce and mayonnaise. (It evolved from a favorite snack of mine when I was in middle school, a sandwich of low-quality hard salami on Pepperidge Farm white bread.) This may be my favorite sandwich – it is certainly the sandwich that is most dear to my heart.

Other sandwiches reign supreme in different times of day or year. Although I eschew the traditional butter for more flavorful mayonnaise, cucumber sandwiches on white bread make me a happy girl with tea and gingerbread and friends-of-the-female-persuasion on a Sunday afternoon. In the summer when it is bright and hot, a tomato grown by somebody I love, sliced thin on a flavorful bread, again with mayo (or else the tomato will make the bread soggy). After a night of debauchery, at about 1:00 in the afternoon having woken not before 11:00 am, a burger with mayo (always, always with the mayo) ketchup, pickles, tomato and lettuce, extra-crispy french-fries and coffee are just the thing for me. I love veggie subs and cheese steaks and interesting combinations of cheeses and cold cuts and vegetables. I love grilled cheese with tomato soup. Or with out it, really. The BLT is a masterpiece, and the addition of avocado simply dreamy.

But the sandwich that fills my thoughts today, that blocks me from other lunch choices and that, through being just-a-bit-too-pricey, has completely undone my grocery shopping plans, forcing me to curtail those ventures till I wind up eating nothing for dinner but handfuls of almonds and grapes (delicious! nutritious! remarkably filling!) That sandwich is one sold at the Seven Stars Bakery here in Providence, and it is divine. It is made with fresh mozzarella from a local creamery, arugula, roasted red pepper and olive tapenade on a section of baguette. With a mug of sweet iced-coffee with coffee ice cubes, it is a little bit of heaven, to be slowly enjoyed over an Agatha Christie mystery in the middle of my day – every day.

I can’t afford it, but I can’t stop myself.

Sandwiches will do that to a girl.


  1. Per and I came up with this one on our epic road trip this summer, and I request at least 3 times a week: guacamole, hummus (preferably garlic), sliced bell peppers (any color except green), and cucumbers, on whole wheat (my favorite) or rye (Per’s favorite). Amazing.

    • Hey Lilly,
      That sounds absolutely delicious. And clean and full of healthy veggies! I am always looking for more ways to get my veggies. I might switch the guacamole out for plain old sliced avocado, because I am too lazy to anything else.

    • Hey xMech! May is also a huge fan of Vietnamese sandwiches. I am fairly certain I would like them, if I could break down any possible language barriers to make sure there was no cilantro in the sandwich. I am one of those who pick up a chemical in cilantro that makes it taste soapy and horrible.

  2. I wholeheartedly agree that the BLT with avocado is a masterpiece; however, a couple of years ago I was introduced to a further improvement on that amazing formula. Add a few leaves of fresh basil to the sandwich (right on top of the mayo.) It ads an almost peppery herbal snap that plays perfectly off of the rich creaminess of the avocado. Truly sublime.

    • Courtney,
      I’m afraid I have a dark confession. I’ve never actually eaten a avocado BLT. But I read about it on a menu and thought – oh yes. That was a wise move, diner. A wise move. I can imagine that a little bit of basil would make this inspired (if currently, to me, imaginary) sandwich even better – basil tends to have that effect. Thanks for the suggestion! I’ll be sure to make one this summer.

    • I’m glad you think so! A little surprised that it was the sandwich post that made you say so … I guess I’m just a raw, sensuous person in every aspect of my life. 😉

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