A toast sandwich is a sandwich made with two thin slices of bread in which the filling is a thin slice of buttered toast.[1][2] An 1861 recipe says to add salt and pepper to taste.[1]

Victorian recipe

A recipe for toast sandwiches is included in the invalid cookery section of the 1861 Book of Household Management by Isabella Beeton, who adds, "This sandwich may be varied by adding a little pulled meat, or very fine slices of cold meat, to the toast, and in any of these forms will be found very tempting to the appetite of an invalid."[3][1]

2011 publicity

In November 2011 the toast sandwich was recreated by the Royal Society of Chemistry in a tasting almost 150 years after the release of Beeton's Book of Household Management.[4] The society sought to revive the forgotten dish in wake of the Great Recession after calculating the cost as low as 7.5p per sandwich.[5] They named it "the country's most economical lunch", offering £200 to whoever could devise a cheaper meal.[6] Due to an overabundance of submissions the offer was closed 7 days later, and the £200 given to a randomly selected entrant.[7]

Heston Blumenthal

The toast sandwich served as a side dish at Heston Blumenthal's restaurant The Fat Duck

In Heston Blumenthal's restaurant The Fat Duck, 12 toast sandwiches are served as a side dish to the "Mad Hatter's Tea Party (circa 1892)", a main course inspired by Alice in Wonderland.[8][9][10] Blumenthal's recipe for the toast sandwich involves bone marrow salad, egg yolk, mustard, gastrique, mayonnaise, and tomato ketchup.[10]

U.S. media coverage

The A.V. Club's Mike Vago described it as an "extravagance of blandness".[11] The Daily Meal article "12 Life-Changing Sandwiches You've Never Heard Of" said the toast sandwich was "just not that good ... Thankfully, the Dadaists didn't invent any more sandwiches after that."[2]

The toast sandwich was discussed on The Leonard Lopate Show in an interview with The Sporkful's Dan Pashman. Host Leonard Lopate commented "it sounds weird to me".[12][13] The game show panelists on NPR's Wait Wait... Don't Tell Me! each tried the toast sandwich.[14] Host Peter Sagal remarked "This is the culinary equivalent of a Rothko painting. Or it's like a sandwich by Marcel Duchamp! It questions the essence of sandwich and language both!"[14]

See also


  1. ^ a b c Beeton, Isabella (July 4, 2012) [1861]. "39: Invalid Cookery; Recipes: Toast Sandwiches". The Book of Household Management. eBooks. 10136. Jonathan Ingram, Sandra Brown. Project Gutenberg. §§ 1877–1878. 
  2. ^ a b Dan Myers (27 February 2015). "12 Life-Changing Sandwiches You've Never Heard Of". The Daily Meal. Retrieved 2015-02-28. 
  3. ^ Lane, Megan (17 November 2011). "The toast sandwich and other hyper-cheap meals". BBC News Magazine. 
  4. ^ "Toast sandwich is UK's 'cheapest meal'". BBC News. 16 November 2011. 
  5. ^ "RSC press release: Mrs Beeton's toast sandwich". www.rsc.org. Retrieved 2015-11-02. 
  6. ^ Fort, Matthew. "The toast sandwich: can you jazz it up?". the Guardian. Retrieved 2015-11-28. 
  7. ^ "RSC Press Release: RSC inboxes overflowing with economical meal suggestions". www.rsc.org. Retrieved 2015-11-28. 
  8. ^ Dan Stock (17 September 2014). "The Fat Duck in Melbourne: Heston Blumenthal has ballot system for bookings". News.com.au. Retrieved 2014-10-08. 
  9. ^ Aaron Langmaid (31 March 2014). "Fat chance you'll get a table at Heston Blumenthal's Fat Duck restaurant at Crown in Melbourne". Herald Sun. Retrieved 2014-10-08. 
  10. ^ a b Sarah Rogozen (31 December 2013). "Heston Blumenthal on Recreating Lewis Carroll's Mock Turtle Soup". KCRW. Retrieved 2014-10-08. 
  11. ^ Mike Vago (19 June 2016). "The powerful bread lobby wants you to read this article about sandwiches". The A.V. Club. Retrieved 2016-06-23. 
  12. ^ Pashman, Dan (24 July 2014). "What Is A Sandwich? (Or, John Hodgman Calls In To Leonard Lopate To Argue With Me)". Sporkful. 
  13. ^ Lopate, Leonard (24 July 2014). "Is a Hot Dog a Sandwich?". WNYC. 
  14. ^ a b Ian Chillag (28 November 2011). "Sandwich Monday: The Toast Sandwich". NPR. Retrieved 2014-05-30. 

External links