Sandwich Mechanics: Intro and Potato

Hi there. If you've read any of the posts on this blog, you may know that I do some programming. What you may not know is that I also dabble in cooking... sandwiches. Well, you might say that making sandwiches shouldn't be construed as cooking. You might also be wrong, though, so you should think about that, too.

Actually, no, making sandwiches isn't cooking in my eyes. I believe I've even said it myself. But I think a lot about making sandwiches. No, I don't mean I think, "oh I ought to make a sandwich". I mean that while I'm making sandwiches I think quite a bit about them. If you know me at all, this may come as no surprise to you, but I overthink things a lot.

So I make sandwiches for myself and the wife, and sometimes I make so many of them that I want to write about what I think about when I do so. This is a blog series that will cover all kinds of aspects of sandwich making, from reviews of different breads, to construction techniques, to choices of toppings, and even thoughts on slicing the sandwich.

I like my introductory posts like I like my sandwiches: with some meat in them. Oh, that was bad. Brace yourself; that's just the beginning. So today I will talk about some bread.

Oroweat Country Potato Bread

Oroweat is interesting in that they have like ten million different varieties of bread, all found in my local Safeway. Country Potato Bread is probably the one that we have been buying for the longest. TLDR right up front: it's pretty tasty bread, most people agree.

The packaging on this Oroweat stuff is actually pretty good. They double wrap the bread--once in the usual thin plastic bag with the little plastic holder contraption, and once within using a thicker plastic bag that you have to rip through. It's inconvenient at first, but I'm convinced it extends the life of the bread, so that's okay in my book. I realize there are those like the great philosopher Hedberg who think it's just one more step on the way to toast, but really, I think it has its value.

The bread itself is not too hard. This is important because you don't want to be eating crackers. You want bread. The bread is not incredibly sturdy, but it's not terrible. And the sturdiness is a measure of how the bread holds up when soaked with sauces or spreads. It's definitely not sturdy enough to really take a slice of tomato without some kind of divider or membrane (??) in between, but it won't get soggy and floppy just from some spread.

And the lack of sturdiness means that it can get pretty squashy if you're not careful when transporting the finished sandwich. I've had some comically misshapen sandwiches at lunch a few times. People were all, "What is that?" And I had to patiently tell them that it's a sandwich, god, can't you see that? This isn't a deal-breaker as far as this bread is concerned.

When you're taking it out of the bag, it also has the chance to rip a little. Man, I'm making this bread sound like a wet paper towel. It's not that bad. Just... just, be a little gentle, yanno?

So how does it taste? Tastes like regular white bread, but heartier and with the distinct taste of potatoes. It's a good taste, with a full body behind it. You should definitely give it a try.

I can't believe I wrote five paragraphs about bread. And I'm gonna do it again in a few days.


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