HAM SANDWICH IN A FRENCH BAR

HAM SANDWICH IN A FRENCH BAR

I’m starting with an observation by David Tanis, New York times contributor and past chef at Chez Panisse from his book Heart of the Artichoke.  He notes that “A well-made sandwich is a superb thing and not so easy to find in the world, despite the fact that so-called panini seem to be all too available everywhere. Why is it so difficult to get a good sandwich? So many are too complicated or slapped together, ill-considered.

If, for instance, you happen to be in Paris, you can still walk into nearly any bar and get a simple ham sandwich on a fresh baguette, and it will somehow be just right. Fresh bread, good butter, good ham. That’s it. If you want mustard or cornichons, they’ll be served on the side. This is where a pre-made, plastic-wrapped sandwich goes wrong. A flawless sandwich must be built to order, quickly but perfectly. Not piled with lettuce, tasteless tomatoes, or sprouts and whatever else. Just simple. The sort of simplicity you get in Italy with prosciutto on a roll, or in Spain with jamón. “

Makes 1 sandwich
1 baguette
Good cultured butter
Cooked ham or jambon de pays

Split the baguette, butter it generously, lay on the ham. Et voilà!

Chef John Ash Educator, Chef, Cookbook Author | Wine Country Cooking