You’ve got to respect a book about sandwiches with an opening chapter called ‘I hate sandwiches…’ It’s a bold move from someone about to hand-hold you through the process of, well, making sandwiches. But if you still remember the lifeless, soggy mess wedged under and between high school text books in your bag, you’ll probably see his point.
Australia, like Cramby’s Swedish home, isn’t exactly famous for its sandwiches, and it’s easy to think there’s little if anything out there beyond the typical ham and cheese affair. Our idea of a sandwich is a small amount of filling between bread. Like Ikea furniture, it’s functional, but not exactly a masterpiece for the generations.
Elsewhere in the world, though, the humble sandwich is something of an art form; filled to overflowing with a cavalcade of indulgent ingredients and flavour combinations.
Cramby has toured the world, seeking out the best sandwiches and their creators, and learning their secrets in making the perfect, most indulgent meals. The result is The Ultimate Sandwich, a DIY warrior’s guide to making the world’s best sandwiches from scratch. While it’s easy enough to just buy the majority of ingredients and ignore the DIY elements, Cramby has a knack for making the extra effort sound fun.
If you’re looking for quick, simple, and humble, this isn’t the book for you, and it’s probably cruel to give this as a gift to anyone on a diet. But if you’ve ever wondered not just how to bake your own breads, but also how to cure your own meats, or make your own cheeses, condiments, and sides, then you might just be onto a winner here.
For those with a sweet tooth, Cramby is also happy to share secrets to some entirely hedonistic ice cream sandwiches. Think banana bread ice cream sandwiches with homemade rum and coconut ice cream, or my personal favourite sarcastic salute, the cop coffee ice cream sandwich: coffee ice cream sandwiched between coffee glazed doughnuts.
If you’re looking for food ideas that are larger than life, and sure to be a crowd pleaser, you’re probably really going to like The Ultimate Sandwich.
The Ultimate Sandwich is available on iTunes and Kindle, and at all good book stores.
Rating: 3 and a half stars
Review by Kylie Thompson