Long Live Sandwich Art! An Open Letter to Buzzfeed
We read your piece The Word Sandwich Has Lost All Meaning, And That Is Not Okay with great interest, and while we admire your dedication to bread, that vital staple of our daily diet, we feel we must interject.
We here at URBAN eat feel that the sandwich isn’t so much a meal as a way of life. A good sandwich picks you up when you’re down, keeps you going through that difficult afternoon in the office, satisfies that midnight food lust. The dog isn’t man’s best friend, the sandwich is! And we wouldnt have it any other way.
Now, we know that the sandwich has a long and distinguished history as a classic bread-filling-bread construction, but that doesn’t mean it must be tied to that. Quite the opposite in fact. When John Montagu, the fourth Earl of Sandwich dreamt up the humble sandwich tucked away in his ye olde hollowed-out volcano like the insane genius he so clearly was, he was breaking free of the norm. He didn’t see beef and two slices of bread; he saw a blank canvas on which to paint something new and inventive. He saw the future – and he liked it.
As such, Montagu was the world’s first modern artist, and just as we shouldn’t look at the likes of Tracy Emin and Damien Hirst and ask ‘Yes, but is it art?’, nor should we look at Apple Sandwiches with Almond Butter and Granola and ask ‘Yes, but is it a sandwich?’. Of course it is! Anything with a delicious filling packed between two thick slices is a sandwich. Just because those thick slices arent thick bready slices doesn’t make it any less worthy of that esteemed title: the sandwich. We cant even land on a name for the sandwich (the sarnie, the butty, the bap, the hoagie); why should we be forced land on a definition of it?
Indeed, the mass of creativity the internet has brought about from its army of sandwich artists is only making the sandwich a better, more integral part of our everyday life. In an age where kids would much rather pack their sandwich with crisps than tuna, or hit the vending machines to get their latest sugary hit, the sandwich offers a chance to smuggle good food into a traditional favourite. The Paleo Italian Sub Roll-Ups are a tremendous idea for getting kids into healthy food in a fun way, as are the Cucumber Roast Beef Sandwiches. Parents rely on wonderful and inventive ideas like these (and many others) to keep their kids healthy – why would we want to stop it?
Just think of all those wonderfully cheery artisan bread makers, do you want to take away their opportunity to build arms like Popeye with their constant kneading? And how about all those wavering vegetarians who have been tempted to the joys of a bacon sandwich?
So come on Buzzfeed, break out of the bread and free the flavour. Sandwiches come in all shapes and sizes, forms and flavours – and they’re all the better for it. Liberate yourself from the tyranny of the traditional and embrace the future of the sandwich.