Sunday, April 26, 2009

The joy of a fish-finger sandwich

I recently had lunch in a rather good pub in the village of Welwyn in Hertfordshire. The Wellington had a fairly extensive menu featuring all the gastropub classics alongside a few more adventurous choices. On this occasion however I was transfixed by a particular item on the menu. Although my mind kept telling me that I should order the fish pie packed with monkfish and pollock and smoked haddock or the aromatic slow roast pork belly, my heart kept coming back to the same dish. It was wholly inappropriate in so many ways. Yet I couldn't get it out of my head.

The dish that took my fancy that Saturday lunchtime wasn't a slow-cooked stew or even a classic Cesar salad. No folks. I'm (slightly) ashamed to admit that it was... a fish finger sandwich. Described on the menu as 'the chef's treat', I knew I wouldn't be happy unless I ordered it.

The humble fish-finger sandwich holds a place in my heart and takes me back to my student days when it was a regular feature on the menu. The perfect snack late after a night at the pub, the ideal speedy lunch when running out to a lecture, the tasty cheap and cheerful option when student overdraft has been maxed to the limit.

The Wellington had tarted the fish finger sandwich up a little. The bread was rather better than the humble white sliced staple of student days and the tangy tomato relish and homemade tartare sauce were extremely welcome additions. And there was cheese too. My student sandwiches always had cheese.

Sadly I didn't photograph the sandwich but it certainly hit the spot. Last week though, I found I couldn't get the sandwich out of my mind. One lunchtime I found myself strangely lurking in the freezer section of my local corner store. Next thing I knew I was back at home and the fish fingers were cooking under the grill. A quick smear of cream cheese and ketchup plus a few leaves of little gem and I was again in fish-finger heaven.

It felt a bit naughty. I wasn't sure that I'd confess my sin... But it was just too good not to share!

I know that all us food bloggers love to cook from scratch with fresh ingredients but I wonder just how many of you have similar guilty pleasures such as this?!

15 comments:

Wendy said...

I had a fishfinger sandwich for lunch today. Heaven. :)

Jules said...

My guilty pleasure is also fish finger sandwiches. There is something really comforting about them. A moth back when we were doing up the house we unashamedly lived on them!

Nora said...

Oh my God, I LOVE fish finger sandwiches! I like to make it even more of a guilty pleasure by popping a bit of plastic cheese in - it gets all melty and delicious. Mmm, it might be time for a fish finger sandwich...

Katie said...

I've been to this pub too when visiting my sister. It was very nice, although they didn't have the fishfinger sandwiche on the menu then - must be a new addition. My guilty food pleasure is nutella and banana together in a baguette - so good!

Amanda at Little Foodies said...

It was rather healthy with the addition of lettuce... Mmmm fishfinger sandwiches. My kids haven't tried this yet but I think they will this week now.

Cooking from scratch is great but in the real world I think most people have a few guilty secrets. I probably have far too many.

Sylvie said...

I have many guilty pleasure like yours. In fact I do like a good fish finger sandwich every now and then. I also have to hang my head in shame and admit to liking a Big Mac once or twice a year.

Bellini Valli said...

I make something similar but with a packaged fish patty. It is equally as good with a homemade version as well.

Margaret said...

Oh the joys of a fish finger sandwich. It takes me back to my childhood days. I like the sound of the pub chef.

Sam said...

I for one love a fish finger sandwich. The pub sounds fanatastic!

Mark said...

Hands down the greatest sandwich in the world! I love them. Don't be ashamed, embrace it. And it should be made with sliced white bread (nothing fancy) and a slice of plastic cheese is most definitely allowed :)

Other (guilty) pleasures... cheese on toast with worcestershire sauce, banana with peanut butter, peanut butter and jam sandwiches, cereal at night.

Antonia said...

Wendy - great minds clearly think alike!

Jules - I agree, they are totally comforting.

Nora - yes. Plastic cheese is an excellent addition. Always added that at university - I'm now really craving another one.

Katie - nutella and banana sounds like a winning combination to me.


Amanda - the lettuce is my minor nod toward health!! I like the crunch it gives to the sandwich too...

Sylvie - oooh. A big mac. Haven't had one in an age but I have to confess to rather enjoying them too (don't tell anyone though!).

Val - yes, a homemade version would be excellent.

Margaret - I think I'd get on well with this pub chef!

C said...

I wish I weren't so suggestible! It's ages since I've had fish fingers, and a sandwich with tomato ketchup sounds so good that I think I'll be raiding the freezers next time I go shopping!

Scott at Real Epicurean said...

LOL, a fantastic and simple snack!

SarahKate said...

We were at a pub for lunch yesterday here in Winchester and I saw on the menu my idea of the ultimate guilty pleasure... a roast beef and yorkshire pudding wrap! It was a huge yorkshire pudding, wrapped around slices of roast beef, grilled and served with a ton of gravy. God... it was nice.

Anonymous said...

have you ever tried a fish finger toastie? i usually put some bbq sauce and cheese in. also lettuce if i have any. its nice. bit of a tight squeeze in the toastie maker but it fits.

also fish fingers and custard is not as gross as it sounds, i enjoyed it.