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Jeffrey’s Love Letter to the Sandwich

27 November 2008 2,024 views 6 Comments

Editor’s Note: This is a guest post from my younger brother. He lives in New York and runs operations for a brand of women’s shoes called Miz Mooz.

prepI can’t recall a time in my life when I didn’t love a good sandwich. As a toddler I had a fickle palate and to this day my cousin Cary reminds me how I would tote along a freshly made peanut butter sandwich to our local Chinese restaurant. When my family would chow down on Lo Mein and Kung Pao, I would sit quietly in the corner silently eating my pb without the j.
I know that a peanut butter sandwich without jelly may sound a little weird to some, but up until the age of 25 I had issues with fruit in any other form than its original. This meant that I didn’t eat my mom’s famous apple pies, and I definitely did not put jelly on my pb’s.
As I’ve aged, my taste buds have matured and I now eat almost anything put in front of me. From curry to cupcakes there is very little that I will not try, but I have always had a soft spot in my heart for a freshly made sandwich.
finishedproductIn High School, my “go to” changed from pb to turkey. Freshman and Sophomore year my mom would make a classic that included store brand smoked turkey, iceberg lettuce, roma tomatoes, and French’s mustard held together by two pieces of wheat toast. This got me by but I somehow knew that there was more out there.
When I got my driver’s license the brown bagging stopped and most afternoons my friends and I would visit Manhattan Bagel (now known as Ize’s) on Rockville Pike.
It was here that I discovered the delicacy that is known as chicken salad and where I realized that it could be a lot more complex than the base of mayo, celery and chicken suggests. There is a whole world of recipes out there but my favorites would have to include pine nuts, tarragon, and some sort of dried fruit (apricot, or cranberry).
ahsandwichI left the Maryland area after college, moving to Colorado to as my father says “retire for a year” and then to NYC. I’ve tried too many sandwiches to count but the best would have to be a homemade one on a relaxing Saturday afternoon.
There truthfully is nothing better than going grocery shopping and using fresh out of the bag ingredients to make lunch. I do my grocery shopping at the 14th St. Union Square Whole Foods where I have found both fantastic apricot chicken salad as well as a house smoked non-processed turkey. I find processed turkey to be kind of gross because the texture is always slimy.
I have yet to convince my girlfriend of this, but George Costanza may have been on to something – combining the perfect trifecta of TV, sex, and food (in my case, sandwiches) — may be the key to a lifetime of happiness.

Editor’s “The Moistmaker” addition:

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  • Brandon

    I don’t recall ever reading a better homage to sandwiches. I’m so touched that I will now go and make a turkey sandwich from leftover thanksgiving dinner. Thank you soooo much for inspiring me, guest blogger.

  • Jared

    I’m a little disappointed at the absence of another sandwich I’m certain has been very special in Jeffrey’s life… “leftover thanksgiving sandwich!” Religiously he has come to my house on the friday after thanksgiving for the perfect balance of turkey, stuffing, gravy and cranberry sauce on toasted bread! It’s not to be forgotten.

  • Cary

    This is great. I especially like the reference to the classic Seinfeld episode at the end of your blog.

    Your palate certainly has become more sophisticated over time. As for me, there is still nothing like a “triple decker pbj with potato chips shoved inside”.

  • Anonymous

    Jeff’s sandwiches are a gourmet delight. The love and time he puts into each sandwich is something to witness, then watching him savor each bite makes us all want him to make us one of the same. I loved the stories, Jeff. Love ,Mom

  • Anonymous

    I have someone in London who has the same respect for a sandwich as Jeff..could that be because they are cousins!
    Good reading and no better way than food to stay in touch .
    Aunt M

  • mister sandwich

    Put this guy on the FT payroll! Jodi, your public DEMANDS more sandwich-related content on this blog! Perhaps you could switch to an all-sandwich format, just for 2009? Failing that, more photos of sandwiches, okthx.