The sandwich brigade: Cold meat is out - what's left?

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The sandwich brigade: Cold meat is out - what's left?

Hilary Biller, Sunday Times food editor, reminds us about some perennial and forgotten favourites

Hilary Biller

With polony, viennas and cold meats off the radar, what’s left to make a sandwich?
Canned pilchards and sardines come up trumps as they are both zero-rated (no VAT) and versatile• Drain off excess oil or sauce and mash, if desired, with a little vinegar and season with salt and pepper.
• There’s nothing like sardines on buttered toast (which can be warmed up later), drizzle with a little olive oil, a pinch of mixed herbs and top with red pepper slices and add a few pitted olives.
• Drain off excess oil or sauce and mash then mix with hardboiled eggs, a handful of chopped parsley or dill, a dash of vinegar and a little chilli sauce if desired.
• Combine with a some mayonnaise, a dash of curry paste or chakalaka, chopped tomato, diced cucumber  and peeled grated carrot.
• Mix with chutney and grated cheese.Chickpeas, lentils and butter beans are also zero-rated items, rich in protein  and handy to have in the store cupboard• Mashed chickpeas, lentils or beans mixed with chakalaka.
• Drained pulses mixed with leftover savoury mince.
• Drained pulses, roasted vegetables and feta cheese.
• Make a chickpea or butter bean hummus by draining and mashing with the juice of 1 lemon and a tablespoon of tahini paste. Season generously and add a pinch of ground cumin or coriander. A great tip is to make this in the food processor and, for ultimate smoothness, add a block or two of ice at the end with the machine running. This mixture will keep well, covered in the fridge for 2-3 days. Great with many things including cheese, tomato, sliced apple, avocado, green beans, lettuce, roasted vegetables, boiled eggs …
• Baked beans, crispy fried bacon or other leftover meat or chicken and cheddar cheese.Good old peanut (or other nut) butter makes a multitude of  delicious combinations:• Peanut butter and banana slices, dipped in lemon juice to prevent discolouration.
• Peanut butter and a sprinkling of nuts or seeds like sunflower, sesame, pumpkin – and a few raisins.
• Peanut butter and chocolate spread.
• Believe it or not peanut butter and tomato slices, well seasoned, is a delicious combination my father used to put together.
• Peanut butter and grated cheddar cheese.
• Peanut butter, crispy bacon and slices of apple, dipped in lemon juice or just peanut butter and apple slices, first dipped in lemon juice.
• Peanut butter and jam (apricot, mixed fruit,  peach or berry) is a perennial favourite.Remember sandwich spread? It was my standard school lunch sandwich staple …• Sandwich spread with grated cheese.
• Sandwich spread and flaked tuna or mashed sardines.
• Sandwich spread with chickpeas, lentils or butter beans.
• Sandwich spread  and crispy fried pieces of bacon and melted cheese.
• Sandwich spread chopped tomato, cucumber and grated carrot.Marmite (and Bovril) offers a meaty flavour without the meat. Try the following:• Marmite and grated cheese.
• Marmite and roasted vegetables like baby marrow, peppers, carrots and mushrooms.
• Marmite and hardboiled egg.
• Marmite topped with a handful of toasted seeds or nuts and cucumber slices.
• Marmite, lettuce, cheese and tomato.
Share your innovative sandwich fillers with us …

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