When people across the world imagine Japanese food, sandwiches rarely (if ever) come to mind.
Westerners commonly associate sushi, noodles, and rice with Japanese dishes, but may be surprised to learn that sandwiches are easy to find. However, these aren’t as basic or simple as the sandwiches you may eat every day – these are more creative, more diverse, and possibly more delicious!
Here are just some of the most popular combinations in Japan, which demonstrate yet more artistic flair in the kitchen …
This sandwich is one of the more creative combinations of bread and filling: fried soba noodles and pickled ginger. You’ll generally find these served hot by street vendors, or packaged cold at a variety of stores.
Noodles on bread may sound like an odd combination to some people, but this is a very popular sandwich in Japan.
This sandwich was created in the 19th century, and is incredibly common today, especially in Tokyo.
The Katsu Sando sandwich features a deep-fried pork filling, usually with tonkatsu sauce, and often served with shredded cabbage. The bread is generally white, and may be flavored with barbecue sauce or mustard.
The Multi-Layer Sandwich
It’s not too unusual in Japan to find sandwiches with multiple layers. While this is common throughout the world, other nations’ bigger sandwiches tend to have two layers at the most.
In Japan, sandwiches may feature as many as four or five layers, with a variety of complementary ingredients alongside each other. These can be eaten together or separately depending on your personal preference.
Sandwiches may be eaten for dessert in Japan, or as a sweet treat. Rather than savory fillings, bread can be mixed with a variety of different fruits and creams, creating a soft, light close to a meal.
Sweet sandwiches are simple to make, and can be served alongside other fruits. Strawberry mango,
and kiwi fruit are all common fillings.
Shrimp Fillet Sandwiches
Fried shrimp is a popular option throughout Japan, and features in many a meal. It’s also a common filling in sandwiches, serving as a crispy, crunchy contrast to the bread’s soft texture. Mayonnaise is usually added for flavor.
While the humble sandwich may not be quite as fascinating to look at as sushi, some of the fillings explored above nonetheless have an artistic creativity to them. Adding fried noodles to bread, in particular, is a terrific recipe, and a welcome change to some of the blander combinations visitors to Japan may be familiar with.
Preparing Japanese sandwiches requires the best knives, to ensure the bread is sliced into the neatest, most precise portions. The fillings themselves, especially those of a tougher texture, also need chopping with a steady, reliable blade.
Every reputable sandwich-maker in Japan will use a high-quality knife to prepare dishes they can be proud of. Using sub-standard blades will result in an untidy, possibly unsatisfying sandwich, and cutting through the ingredients will take longer, requiring more force.
High-quality Japanese knives are essential to prepare sandwiches with that authentic look, texture, and taste!