Shooter’s Sandwich

This wonderful sandwich has stood me in good stead on many journeys. Indeed, it fed one of my editors and his wife all the way to Rome. It comes from a charming book by T. Earle Welby, The Dinner Knell (Methuen 1932). It is a great standby on British Rail where the buffet is temperamental to say the least. I always carry my own food and drink, together with ice and napkins.

Ingredients

  • a very thick rump steak the size of the loaf
  • 1 sandwich loaf of the best quality
  • some big flat field mushrooms
  • salt and freshly ground black pepper

Method

The steak should be about 4-5 cm/1½-2 in. thick, cut from some fine well-hung animal. Cut one end off the loaf and remove as much centre crumb as necessary to allow the steak and mushrooms to fit in snugly when cooked. Grill the meat fiercely on either side but keep it very rare. Take from the fire and season well on both sides, then insert it into the hollowed loaf. Grill enough mushrooms to cover the meat plentifully and place them over the steak. Replace the deleted crust end of the loaf.

Wrap the whole thing in a double sheet of white blotting paper and secure with string into a neat parcel. Then secure again with greaseproof paper and more string. (Nowadays you could use foil and film, but it is not so charmful.) Place under a weighted board for at least 6 hours. When eating this sandwich just cut off a slice as required. As Welby said, ‘With this “Sandwich” and a flask of whiskey waters, a man may travel from Land’s End to Quaker Oats (sic) and snap his fingers at both.’

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