Slice of heaven: Mark Hix's tempting breakfast sandwiches

view gallery VIEW GALLERY

The perfect fix on a cold winter's morning

I was swigging beer with some friends at Sadie Coles's new gallery in Mayfair a few weeks ago, and for some bizarre reason we got on to the subject of egg sandwiches. It's actually an interesting subject, because most egg sandwiches that get dished up are incredibly bland and have been made with no imagination whatsoever.

Some of my best ideas for columns have been conceived after a few glasses with a group of friends – so I thought it would be a good idea to write this week's column about eggy-breakfast sarnies. The other week I was recommended the black pudding sandwich at Fernandez and Wells in Beak Street, Soho ( and it was fabulous – perfect for when you need that quick breakfast-fix on your way to work.

Fried duck's egg sandwich

Serves 4

I created this sandwich after the conversation with my friends in which we lamented the lack of good egg sandwiches available in the shops. We often do an alternative duck-egg mayonnaise in the restaurants by deep-frying the duck's egg – and in a sandwich it creates a lovely texture with the combination of that crisp exterior and the slightly soft yolk.

4 duck's eggs
1tbsp plain flour
1 hen's egg, beaten
40-50g fresh white breadcrumbs
Vegetable or corn oil for deep frying
4 soft baps or buns
A few leaves of crisp lettuce like iceberg or gems, washed and shredded
6-8tbsp good-quality mayonnaise

Soft-boil the duck's eggs by carefully placing in simmering water for 5 minutes, depending on their size, then refresh in cold water (if the duck's eggs are very large you may need to give them an extra minute or so). Once cool enough to handle, peel them, ensuring you have removed all of the shell.

Preheat about 8cm of oil to 160-180C in a large, thick-bottomed saucepan or electric deep-fat fryer.

Have 3 dishes ready, one with the flour, seasoned with salt and pepper, one with the beaten egg and the third with the breadcrumbs. Carefully pass the eggs through the flour, shaking off any excess, then the beaten egg and finally the breadcrumbs. Deep-fry the eggs for about 2-3 minutes or until golden, turning them as they are cooking, then remove them with a slotted spoon and drain on some kitchen paper.

Halve the buns, then mix about half of the mayonnaise with the lettuce and spoon on to the bottom half of the buns and spread the rest of the mayonnaise on the top of the bun. Cut the eggs half-way through; place on the lettuce and top with the other half of the bun.

Cheese and wild mushroom sandwich

Serves 4

I had a wild mushroom sandwich a few weeks back and although it tasted great, the mushrooms sadly ended up all over my shirt and on the floor when I attemped to take a bite. You can easily solve this by simply adding a few slices of cheese – not too strong-tasting – which will bind the mushrooms together. You could also, of course, make a flat mushroom omelette that gets sandwiched between two slices of bread.

8 slices of sourdough bread
1tbsp olive oil
A couple of good knobs of butter
300-350g wild mushroom, cleaned
1 clove of garlic, peeled and crushed
4 spring onions, finely chopped
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
150g mild cheddar, grated

Cut the mushrooms into even-sized pieces. Heat the olive oil in a frying pan with the butter and cook the mushrooms, garlic and spring onions on a medium heat for 3-4 minutes, turning and seasoning them as they are cooking.

Spoon them on to four of the slices of bread and top with the grated cheese and place the other slice on top. Grill on both sides for a minute or so, cut in half and serve.

Black pudding sandwich

Serves 4

This is a version of the Fernandez and Wells sandwich that I was scoffing the other week on my way through Soho. The quality of the black pudding is crucial as that cardboard-like stuff with the texture of sawdust just won't work.

8 baps or rolls or 8 slices of sourdough
Softened butter
6 duck's eggs, boiled for 5 minutes, then refreshed in cold water and peeled
4-6tbsp good-quality mayonnaise
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
400-450g good-quality black pudding
Vegetable or corn oil for frying

Slice the black pudding into 1cm-thick slices if they are the large cylinder types or into 2 or 3 lengthways if they are the Bury-style puddings.

Chop the duck's eggs and mix with a good amount of mayonnaise and season well. Pan-fry the black pudding for about 2-3 minutes on each side.

Spread the butter on to the bread then spoon the egg mayonnaise on to one half with the black pudding on top and the other half of the bread on top.

Give the bread a light toasting on each side and serve.

Square sausage sandwich

Serves 4

You don't really see square sausages down South, but I cannot understand why we don't sell them – they're great for breakfast as you can slide your egg on to a slice of sausage or stack up your bacon and mushrooms on top. My preferred way is in a sandwich as it fits exactly in a small square-ish loaf shape; or you can alternatively flatten it to fit the bread.

If you're wondering where on earth you're going to find square sausages, the best thing to do is to make your own; simply buy some good-quality sausage meat and mould them with a fish slice or palette knife.

8 slices of a square good-quality loaf
500g good-quality sausagemeat
A little vegetable or corn oil for frying

Mould the sausagemeat into flat squares that are just a bit larger than your slices of bread.

Heat the oil in a heavy frying pan and cook the sausagemeat on a fairly high heat for about 2-3 minutes on each side.

Serve between buttered bread or non-buttered slices of bread.

Suggested Topics
Arts and Entertainment
The teaser trailer has provoked more questions than answers
filmBut what is Bond's 'secret' that Moneypenny is talking about?
football This was Kane’s night, even if he played just a small part of it
travel Dreamland Margate, Britain’s oldest amusement park, is set to reopen
Life and Style
ebookNow available in paperback
ebookPart of The Independent’s new eBook series The Great Composers
Founders James Brown and Tim Southwell with a mock-up of the first ever ‘Loaded’ magazine in 1994
Threlfall says: 'I am a guardian of the reality keys. I think I drive directors nuts'
voices The group has just unveiled a billion dollar plan to help nurse the British countryside back to health
The Westgate, a gay pub in the centre of Gloucester which played host to drag queens, has closed
  • Get to the point
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

ES Rentals

    iJobs Job Widget
    iJobs Food & Drink

    SFL Group: Video Project Manager

    £24,000 pa, plus benefits: SFL Group: Looking for a hard-working and self-moti...

    Recruitment Genius: Hotel Reservations Assistant - French Speaking

    £16000 - £17000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This rapidly expanding travel c...

    Recruitment Genius: Duty Manager - World-Famous London Museum

    £24000 - £28000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: Do you have a strong record of ...

    Recruitment Genius: Personal Assistant

    £24000 - £28000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: You will have demonstrable unde...

    Day In a Page

    The saffron censorship that governs India: Why national pride and religious sentiment trump freedom of expression

    The saffron censorship that governs India

    Zareer Masani reveals why national pride and religious sentiment trump freedom of expression
    Prince Charles' 'black spider' letters to be published 'within weeks'

    Prince Charles' 'black spider' letters to be published 'within weeks'

    Supreme Court rules Dominic Grieve's ministerial veto was invalid
    Distressed Zayn Malik fans are cutting themselves - how did fandom get so dark?

    How did fandom get so dark?

    Grief over Zayn Malik's exit from One Direction seemed amusing until stories of mass 'cutting' emerged. Experts tell Gillian Orr the distress is real, and the girls need support
    The galaxy collisions that shed light on unseen parallel Universe

    The cosmic collisions that have shed light on unseen parallel Universe

    Dark matter study gives scientists insight into mystery of space
    The Swedes are adding a gender-neutral pronoun to their dictionary

    Swedes introduce gender-neutral pronoun

    Why, asks Simon Usborne, must English still struggle awkwardly with the likes of 's/he' and 'they'?
    Disney's mega money-making formula: 'Human' remakes of cartoon classics are part of a lucrative, long-term creative plan

    Disney's mega money-making formula

    'Human' remakes of cartoon classics are part of a lucrative, long-term creative plan
    Lobster has gone mainstream with supermarket bargains for £10 or less - but is it any good?

    Lobster has gone mainstream

    Anthea Gerrie, raised on meaty specimens from the waters around Maine, reveals how to cook up an affordable feast
    Easter 2015: 14 best decorations

    14 best Easter decorations

    Get into the Easter spirit with our pick of accessories, ornaments and tableware
    Paul Scholes column: Gareth Bale would be a perfect fit at Manchester United and could turn them into serious title contenders next season

    Paul Scholes column

    Gareth Bale would be a perfect fit at Manchester United and could turn them into serious title contenders next season
    Inside the Kansas greenhouses where Monsanto is 'playing God' with the future of the planet

    The future of GM

    The greenhouses where Monsanto 'plays God' with the future of the planet
    Britain's mild winters could be numbered: why global warming is leaving UK chillier

    Britain's mild winters could be numbered

    Gulf Stream is slowing down faster than ever, scientists say
    Government gives £250,000 to Independent appeal

    Government gives £250,000 to Independent appeal

    Donation brings total raised by Homeless Veterans campaign to at least £1.25m
    Oh dear, the most borrowed book at Bank of England library doesn't inspire confidence

    The most borrowed book at Bank of England library? Oh dear

    The book's fifth edition is used for Edexcel exams
    Cowslips vs honeysuckle: The hunt for the UK’s favourite wildflower

    Cowslips vs honeysuckle

    It's the hunt for UK’s favourite wildflower
    Child abuse scandal: Did a botched blackmail attempt by South African intelligence help Cyril Smith escape justice?

    Did a botched blackmail attempt help Cyril Smith escape justice?

    A fresh twist reveals the Liberal MP was targeted by the notorious South African intelligence agency Boss