Spruce up your sarnies

Published: Sunday 26th April 2015 by The News Editor

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Hmm… what to eat for lunch? For some, this is an endless daily dilemma. For many, it seems, there’s no contest – a cheese sandwich, of course.

According to a recent poll by Lurpak, looking at the lunchtime habits of office workers, three in 10 eat exactly the same thing for lunch each workday. Without fail. For an average of four-and-a-half years. And the most popular option? A humble cheese sarnie.

If you’re one such sandwich muncher, that means, since around Christmas 2010, you’ve eaten 1,000 cheese sandwiches.

Now there’s nothing wrong with a good, old-fashioned cheese sandwich, but as picnic season rumbles into view, there’s never been a better time to, well, roll out the changes.

Comfort food

“The repetition of eating the same food every day can provide reassurance and stability,” says Lurpak expert and food psychologist, Greg Tucker. “However, humans have the innate desire for exploration and we would benefit from shaking things up.

“New tastes and experiences can excite and motivate us, especially as we have a far greater selection of foods to experiment with than we’ve ever had before.”

As such, he’s encouraging everyone to ‘freestyle’ (#Freestyle) with their slices of bread (or indeed, for the really brave, their sourdough baguettes).

Want to fancy up your fillings? Here are some ideas, courtesy of @Lurpak.

:: Chicken and mango sandwich with mint raita

After applying your spread to walnut or granary bread, top with mixed leaves, thinly-sliced fresh mango and ripped-up roast chicken breast. Add a dollop of Greek yoghurt flavoured with finely chopped mint and a spoonful of mango chutney with a few mint leaves on top for that little bit extra.

:: Smoked ham and egg with capers, gherkins and mustard mayo

Top a seeded roll or bagel with spread, watercress, slices of smoked ham and a sliced boiled egg. Throw in a couple of sliced gherkins and finish with a dollop of mustard mayo and a sprinkling of tiny capers.

:: Feta with avocado and roasted red pepper

Place a handful of baby spinach leaves on to fresh focaccia covered in spread. Add some ripe avocado slices, ripped-up roasted red pepper and broken-up chunks of feta, with a few torn basil leaves, ground black pepper and balsamic vinegar.

:: Fig, manchego and honey crostini

Put spread on a rustic baguette and layer with Serano ham and Manchego cheese. Chop a fig into wedges and layer on top. Finish with a drizzle of honey and a scattering of walnuts.

:: Peach and ricotta on raisin bread

Sweeten ricotta with vanilla essence and lemon zest. Leave to infuse. Heat peach wedges in a pan to enhance the flavours. Apply your spread to raisin bread, add the ricotta mixture, peaches and chopped pistachios. A trickle of honey and rose water creates the perfect finish.

:: Middle Eastern feta, beetroot and pomegranate

Toss beetroot, spinach leaves, feta and dill in a bowl and season with black pepper, salt and lemon juice. Take two slices of Middle Eastern bread or pitta. Add a spread and layer on the beetroot, spinach and feta. Finish with pomegranate seeds.

:: Pulled chicken waffle burger

Heat cooked chicken in a pan with a dollop of BBQ sauce until hot. Cook an egg in a separate pan, keep it runny or hard – you choose. Cover one waffle in spread and layer on the chicken. Slide the egg on top and dress with red onion chutney. Top with another waffle and season.

:: Prawns with broad beans and mint on rye

Combine a mixture of cooked broad beans, tiger prawns, fresh mint, cucumber and olive oil in a bowl. Sprinkle with salt and pepper to season. Smear rye bread with spread. Scoop the prawn mixture over the bread, moisten with a burst of lemon.

:: Bacon, ricotta, kale, chilli, lemon and tomato on sourdough

Fry garlic, kale, chilli, salt and pepper in a pan. Butter two slices of sourdough with spread and ricotta. Add a dash of lemon zest. Mount one slice with kale, tomato and grilled bacon and place the second on top.

Copyright Press Association 2015

Published: Sunday 26th April 2015 by The News Editor

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