Cult Sando And The Prettiest Sando You’ll Ever See

How divine is this Fruit Salad sando, from Cult Sando (Harper By Design).
How divine is this Fruit Salad Sando, from Cult Sando (Harper By Design).

Trust the Japanese to take something like the humble sandwich and turn it into something as perfect as the sando. These crustless, white sandwiches can be seen everywhere in Japan: on convenience store shelves, train menus, and in vending machines. They can even now be found in hipster pop-ups and on the menus of high-end restaurants.

Part of a culinary food group, yōshoku, which roughly translates to “western food”, they’re a great example of the Japanese pursuit of perfection. What makes them unique among sandwiches is that they are wrapped and pressed, uniting the filling and bread so that when they are cut, you see a beautiful cross-section.

Doesn’t the Fruit Salad sando here look divine? If not divine, then certainly interesting! It’s from a gorgeous little book under the Harper By Design imprint, a new label that is billed as focusing on “beautiful books that help make every day special”.

The recipes in Cult Sando were curated by Jimmy Callaway, who worked at some of Sydney’s top restaurants, including the Four in Hand Dining Room and Firedoor, before doing a food pilgrimage to Europe and settling in northern Italy.

Callaway is passionate about getting to know people and their culture through the lens of food, and his own style and flair is apparent on every page of this book. With stunning photography and a very Japanese aesthetic, it has recipes ranging from Japanese favourites such as egg salad and pork katsu, to more contemporary fillings like mortadella, tofu and ice cream.

The recipes are divided into classic, vegetable, seafood, meat and sweet ingredients. The Fruit Salad sando here might seem odd but the secret to its success lies in the quality of the ingredients.

Callaway explains some of the important points in what makes a good sando. They are usually served chilled or at room temperature, for example (almost never hot, even with a katsu filling). The bread, shokupan, is a soft, fluffy bread that took off in popularity in Japan in the 1970s and is now as ubiquitous as gyoza and ramen. Loads of Australian bakeries are now making this bread.

Buy your copy of  Cult Sando from Australian-owned Booktopia.

Cult Sando by Jimmy Calloway

Fruit Salad Sando

Makes 2

Prep/Cook Time: 15 minutes
Press Time: 20 minutes

4 slices shokupan
orange, peeled and pith removed
6 strawberries
kiwi fruit, peeled
4 tablespoons caster (granulated) sugar
½ cup (125 ml/4 fl oz) thickened (whipping) cream
½ cup (125 ml/4 fl oz) double (thick) cream
1 teaspoon dark rum

Remove two segments from the orange and cut in half. Wash strawberries, pat dry and remove green tops. Divide kiwi fruit into quarters lengthways.

In a medium-sized bowl, gently whisk caster sugar into thickened cream to dissolve. Add double cream and rum, then whisk until stiff peaks form. Spread ½ tablespoon cream mixture onto each slice of shokupan.

Over two of the slices, arrange three strawberries in a row in the middle. Place a piece of kiwi in the top right corner and a piece of orange in the bottom left corner. Divide remaining cream mixture over the fruit, and top with remaining slices of bread.

Gently wrap in cling film (plastic wrap), marking the cross-section line on film with a marker, and press for 20 minutes in the fridge. To serve, trim crusts and cut diagonally on the cross-section line.

Recipe and image from Cult Sando by Jimmy Callaway. Published by Harper by Design and reproduced with the publisher’s permission.

If you enjoyed this post, you might also like our post on Japanese Home Cooking and its delicious recipe for Okonomiyaki (Japanese pancake).

**Enjoy many more delicious recipes from our Food Wine Travel files here.**

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