Someone has finally pointed out how weird the shit Brits put in sandwiches is
It’s not natural
For so long it was the elephant in the room. An unspoken evil spread across our society like warmed up Lurpak.
No more. Someone has rightly pointed out just how weird our British sandwich habits are. It's something that's hard to ignore, once you've noticed it, and has prompted me to conduct a full and thorough investigation.
And you know what? Shit got weird.
Yes, putting anything that will fit between bread is a cornerstone of our national identity. "Why could we not just have these things separately?" you cry, raising a question with no satisfying answer.
Some things we are not meant to know or understand, but must be content to observe and marvel at.
Hold on for dear life as I pull back the curtain and let the light shine on the rabbit hole that is British sandwich habits.
Your entire christmas dinner, cold, squeezed between two helpless slices of bread.
In the post-Christmas orgy of gluttony, one leftover snack reigns supreme for Brits – the cold Christmas dinner sandwich.
It simply isn't a proper Christmas if there hasn't been an attempt to fit the entire contents of the fridge in one sandwich without a second thought for how far the human jaw can realistically stretch.
Each jostling for their own layer is a list of leftovers that includes, but is not limited to: ham, turkey, pigs in blankets, stuffing, bubble and squeak, cranberry sauce, gravy, and – if you're feeling ready to break with tradition – cauliflower.
The masticator's nightmare – what do you chew? Do you have it hot or do you have it cold?
Could a person with no teeth eat a mashed potato sandwich? Because I reckon they could.
So many questions, but none as pertinent as simply asking why?
The other side of the cooked potato coin is putting chips in your sandwich.
Realistically, it's gotta be chip shop chips – a bit soggy, greasy, and lacking the crunch of fries. Actually, no description could ever really get close to the unadulterated splendour of the chip butty.
Topping up a perfectly good sarnie with some crisps
It's only fitting that as a nation of innovators who devised the steam engine and the internet, one of us saw fit to give in to curiosity and combine the two key elements of a meal deal.
Since that momentous day, as epoch-defining as when the first caveman conjured fire, sneaking a few crisps into your sandwich to bolster the flavour and diversify the texture has become second nature.
Just don't forget to squish them up a bit, tearing the bread as you do so.
Forsaking all other fillings for a pure crisp sandwich
That said, as the nation who also created deep-fried Mars bars and continues to let Geordie Shore happen, we know a thing or two about taking things too far.
Following a fondness for crisps in sandwiches to its logical endgame by having only crisps in the sandwich is one of those things.
Nobody truly knows why Brits tolerate the danger in every bite, where an unruly, angular crisp may strike out and pierce your gums.
The Wigan Kebab is a way of life in Wigan, which in turn says so much about the British way of life.
It is nice, there's no denying that. And it kind of makes sense – the bread exterior stops the filling spilling and protects your hand from the heat.
At its core, though, the pie barm is overkill. By hiding it underneath bread and pastry, you're essentially double bagging the pie filling.
Part of the secret to the enduring success of the fish finger sandwich is its range. From a humble pre-sliced white bread and Bird's Eye duo, all the way to a freshly-baked crusty roll with crisp gem lettuce, Waitrose fish fingers and freshly made tartar sauce, there's rarely an occasion
None of this obscures the essential weirdness at the heart of the concept – covering fish in bread, only to enclose it in further bread like it's pass the fucking parcel.
Whilst it's perfectly legitimate to put stuff in a sandwich to bulk it out, there comes a point – whether it's with fish fingers or an entire pie – where you're just trying to hide the filling.
Toast – literally just cooked bread – as a filling for two other slices of bread
With a cost of only 7.5p per sandwich, it's the cheapest lunch going and a bona fide British icon to boot.
Such an icon, in fact, it's got a Wikipedia page which is an absolute goldmine.
The Guardian try to spice it up with salt and pepper. Philistines. Heston Blumenthal serves a side dish of 12 toast sandwiches at his restaurant, The Fat Duck, made using 'bone marrow salad'. Is there a parable here about the creeping gentrification of British society?
At the end of the day, though, who looked at a potential sandwich and decided the one thing it needed was more bread?
One of the more logistically challenging sandwiches on our list is the Pot Noodle sandwich.
Surely all depends on the quality of bread, with a successful endeavour requiring some fairly sturdy slices to withstand the gloop.
Cheese and pickle – Branston pickle and Cheddar cheese, specifically
A cheese and pickle sandwich is completely normal. I will fight anyone who says otherwise.
Cucumber, and just cucumber.
Let's put it this way – if someone described you as a cucumber sandwich, you would not be impressed.
It serves well as a member of an ensemble, but only Brits, in our infinite sandwich wisdom, would elevate it to the status of a regular, solo filling.
Perhaps we got caught up in how quaint cucumber sandwiches are we lost sight of the fact they're soggy, weird, probably not a flavour, and definitely shouldn't be a thing
Not put off by the fact that lasagne is itself a pasta sandwich, intrepid Brits decide to put it between bread.
Which is actually genius if you think about it, bookending the pasta with bread. Hell, without that you could go on forever, layering ragu upon white sauce upon pasta for days, without the bread telling it where to stop.
If you think this is a figment of my imagination, Tesco actually sold these abominations.