PPK Cookbook Challenge – Vegan Sandwiches Save the Day

I didn’t really intend to participate in the next cookbook challange for Vegan Sandwiches Save the Day. I tested many of the recipes from this book and I like to use the cookbook challenge to spur me on to try new things. I make no secret of the fact that this is one of my favourite cookbooks from two of my favourite people.¬†However, just as a coincidence really I did end up making 4 new sandwiches over the challenge period. I will start by saying that the photographs in this book are as beautiful as mine are dreadful, so please take a look at them for a far better idea of how the sandwiches should really look!

First up was the Jimwich. It really astonished me that I hadn’t made this before but my husband suggested making it and I certainly wasn’t complaining. It’s made up of seitan, BBQ onion and topped with battered fried pickles. I loved it so much, especially the crispy pickles.

Next I made the Kati rolls, or half made them. I did make the filling but I can buy really good chapati at the Indian shop close to me, and it was a worknight so I decided to go the easy route instead. The sandwich was still really good and if you’re not a bread person the filling would be great served with rice too.

I’m not sure why Flickr is being an arse about my next picture but you’re not missing much, on the picture front anyway! This is the North End Grinder, which is made from either home made or store bought cold meats, salad ingredients and a simple but incredibly tasty dressing. Easy to throw together, great hot weather food, there’s nothing about this not to like (especially the gobbler slices; I had some that had been in my freezer for ages but they still worked very well).

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Finally, the¬†marinated aubergine sandwich. This was another one that escaped my notice during testing and I’ve no idea why. There’s a mistake in the book too; you’re supposed to cut your tofu into much smaller slices. You can probably get 12 but the way tofu is shaped here gave me 8. The aubergine in this is fantastic and I bet there are lots of other ways you could use it too.

All in all, I would say the Vegan Sandwiches Save the Day is a book you can’t be without. There’s a sandwich for every occasion – they’re hot, cold, open faced, sweet, savoury, time consuming, quick and easy, wraps, rolls, and everything else you’d want from a book about sandwiches that just happen to be vegan.

Vegan Sandwiches Save the Day – A Giveaway

Photo from Amazon

If I think about last summer, I think about sandwiches. I was lucky enough to test recipes for this book, so altogether I made getting on for 60 sandwiches or ingredients for sandwiches over the testing period. Before summer, I don’t think I’d have been able to think of even 30 fillings for sandwiches – and there’s loads in the book that I didn’t test too.

Sandwiches in Britain are not quite the same as sandwiches in the US. Here, they tend to be something to wrap up and take to school or work. They’re made for ease to transport and maybe eat on the go, so they’re usually quite scant on filling, cold, and frankly a bit dull. If you get them in a tortilla wrap it’s an exciting day. My first trip to the US confirmed that there is a whole other world of sandwiches out there and that they can be hot, stuffed
and a meal in themselves.

This book really revolutionizes the sandwich and makes it totally vegan. The chapters are breakfast, topless, cold sandwiches, classics, bold new ground, sweet sandwiches and then building blocks such as bread, brioche and lunch meats. My favourite thing about the book is the variety. There are big sloppy comforting sandwiches, light healthy lunches, classic evening meals and weekend breakfast treats. Sandwich “outsides” include bread (doh!), waffles, wraps, rice paper, pita, chapati, pastry, brioche, bagels, muffins, pancakes, cookies and more. The authors also encourage us to be flexible and swap the fillings and outsides around – I have certainly made some elements of the recipes and served them in other forms.

I have made one new to me sandwich and remade 2 since I got my copy of the book. I didn’t do this deliberately but I think the 3 of them show the variety in the book. The sandwich I hadn’t made before was the Peanut Butter, Banana and Bacon Sandwich.

This uses chickpeas for the bacon, but gives a tempeh bacon option. It’s a fantastic take on a childhood favourite and made a great breakfast. The chickpeas are good and bacony on their own but lose a bit of their delightful savouriness in the sandwich, so I might up some of the seasonings next time.

I made the Mexican Chick-Un and Waffles quite early on during testing so was delighted to make them again. They use sweetcorn waffles, marinaded tofu and a spicy gravy. This is in the breakfast chapter but I treated myself to it for dinner one night while my sweetcorn hater was away.

Finally I made the BLT for lunch. This is very different from other incarnations I have made or tried, mostly because of the fabulous spread, which is made from palm hearts, amongst other things. Incidentally during testing I used up the extra spread in a baked potato which is also recommended.

The book is full of Celine’s beautiful photos, so I’ll spare you any more of mine, but there’s a tester Flickr group here too. Also, don’t forget to check the “extras” page here on Celine’s website for some extra sandwich components such as spice blends, salsas and sauces that didn’t make it into the book for space reasons.

I have many favourites from the book, but some include Country Sausage, Out for The Count of Monte Cristo, Navajo Tacos, Welsh Rarebit, Dagwood, From Russia with Love, Double Decker Deluxe, Chickpea Shawarma, Pav Bhaji and Ethiopian Wraps.

If you’re in Europe, I have a treat in store for one of you. I have a copy to give away! And what’s more, I’m not going to ask you to follow me on Twitter, like me on Facebook or carry out a piece of complicated brain surgery and send me a picture. All you need to do is leave me a comment and tell me your favourite sandwich, vegan or not, and whereabouts in Europe you live. I’ll choose one winner at random on 10th September.