The Art of the Super Bowl Sandwich

By Regina Charboneau
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With the Super Bowl coming this weekend I am trying to figure out if I need to make something special. Last year everyone went all-out around here because our beloved New Orleans Saints came through in a big way. The buzz is not too loud this year ... a bit of a hum. I am thinking the most I will offer up during the game is a sandwich for my guys.

I love good crusty French bread with just about anything on it, from brisket with gravy to fried oysters.

I just had to go online to find out who is even playing this year. Pittsburgh Steelers and the Packers—so what comes to mind since I have never visited Pittsburgh or Green Bay? The "almost famous" Primanti Brother's sandwich, from a Pittsburgh institution, comes with fries and slaw inside the sandwich. My husband has experienced this. I have not. And I have never heard of a famous sandwich from Green Bay ... but I am sure they have some amazing cheese sandwiches.

When I think of sandwiches I think of Blondie, the popular comic strip created by cartoonist Chic Young in the early 1930s and which still runs in many newspapers today, featuring Blondie and her sandwich-loving husband, Dagwood. If I remember correctly his sandwich is just about anything he can find in the fridge stacked between several slices of bread. I guess that would be the vertical version of the submarine sandwich ... same ingredients, different bread.

I have definite thoughts on sandwiches. I for one am not a fan of a cold sandwich, with the exception of two: a peanut butter and jelly and a tomato sandwich during the summer. I love good crusty French bread with just about anything on it, from brisket with gravy to fried oysters. Here are my personal criteria for what I consider a good sandwich (I am sure you have your own):

    • Toasted bread, but still soft, and if it is buttered even better

    • If the sandwich has something so good on it that it does not need much more

    • If there is cheese on it, the cheese has to be melted

    • If there is meat on I, the meat needs to be heated

    • If there is bacon on it, it makes it better

    • Most any mustard goes with salami, ham, and turkey but honey mustard goes only with ham and turkey

    • If pickles, lettuce, or tomato are added they have to be cold and added at the last moment

    • There needs to be something a bit tangy— if not mustard, a touch of vinegar, whether it is olives, pickles, or pepper rings

    • The best sandwich needs at least two napkins or it is too dry for me

I have two recipes I have given in the past that I would recommend for a Super Bowl sandwich: my meatloaf sandwich and the Muffaletta. The traditional New Orleans Muffaletta is a favorite even if you are not rooting for the Saints. We may not have the team in the Super Bowl this year, but we have the sandwiches.

This article available online at:

http://www.theatlantic.com/health/archive/2011/02/the-art-of-the-super-bowl-sandwich/70749/