The Weekend Series: five street-food sandwiches you need in your mouth right now
Being the insatiable food lovers we are, we’re always on the hunt for the next intriguing cuisine to tantalise our tastebuds. Last year we declared poke was on our hit list, and then lo and behold our prayers were answered with our very own poke joint. We’re going to try our luck again by putting our wishes out into the cosmos in the hopes that our positive thinking brings us street food-based blessings this year. Right now, the only thing on our mind is a killer sandwich, so we’ve scoured the web for the world’s most scrumptious street-food sandwiches that we’d love to see take off in Brisbane.
It’s not a stretch to see some enterprising eatery give this one a try. We’ve already got a plethora of Korean restaurants and even a few cheesesteak outlets – why not meet in the middle? This bulgogi cheesesteak sandwich (also referred to as a ‘koagie’) is becoming increasingly popular in the United States, where the Philadelphia street-food staple merges with spicy Korean flavours to create a scintillating combo. Sliced beef marinated in ginger, garlic, sugar, gochujang, soy sauce and rice vinegar is cooked and layered on a crusty baguette with caramelised onions and cheese (and even kimchi). What’s not to like?
Image: Spoon Fork Bacon
If you are a stickler for tradition and believe that a sandwich must feature bread in order for it to be a sandwich, then the patacón might not be your bag. If you like playing free and loose with the rules (we like your style), then this Venezuelan favourite could very well become your everything. A patacón substitutes bread for pressed green plantains that have been fried into crispy golden discs, which then hold a range of fillings from shredded beef to chicken. A staple of Venezuela’s street-food scene, we are eager to get our hands on these sandwich hybrids by any means.
Image: Que Rica Vida
Okay – we’re cheating here. This one isn’t necessarily street food but it’s a sandwich that is certainly on our hit list. Sweden is well known for taking liberties in its interpretation of the humble sandwich. The country has reinvented and redesigned the staple into something that’s a far cry from our ham, cheese and tomato sanga, which now seems paltry by comparison. Have a look at the smörgåstårta for example, which is literally translated to ‘sandwich cake’. This beautiful construction features several layers of rye bread filled with everything from liver pate, olives, shrimp, ham, egg, mayonnaise, caviar, cucumber and more. Ughn, cut us off a piece of that. We imagine this sandwich would be as hard to serve from a street-food stall or food truck as it is to pronounce, but we’ll be damned if we don’t want to see someone try.
Our next entrant on this list also comes from South America, and is particularly popular in Argentina, Uruguay, Chile and Brazil. The name choripán comes from a combination of the sandwich’s key ingredients – chorizo and pan (crusty bread). This simple sambo features a grilled sausage split length-wise, topped with a garlic-laden chimichurri sauce before being served on a crusty roll. What choripáns lack in sophistication they more than make up for in flavour and convenience, making it one of the most popular items at street stalls and sport venues across South America. We love chorizo too, so why can’t we get in on the action?
Image: Tara’s Multicultural Table
What started as one of the most humble of India’s street foods has gradually emerged as one of the most popular. This dish features a batata vada – or spiced and fried balls of potato (that’s how we love our spuds, too) – served between two small slices of bread (also known as pav) and served with fried green chillies as well as a mix of sweet and green chutneys. This sandwich is great for any time of day and is as filling as it is easy to prepare.
Image: D for Delhi
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