When I was a little kid, visiting my nanny and poppy’s house in Botwood, Newfoundland, meant two things: I would spend time outside playing in the garden, and I would get to eat some thick slices of bologna. My parents never, I mean never, had the thick-cut stuff around the house. They felt it was bad for you, opting to go for the healthier (and perhaps trendier) thin sliced sandwich meats.
For me, a thick-cut bologna sandwich was special, especially because of the white bread. It always had to be with white bread. Big fat slices of white fluffy carbs. Growing up, Ben’s classic white and wheat sandwich breads were a staple in Atlantic Canada, found in my lunchbox and many others (with or without thick-cut bologna), and this year Ben’s Bakery is celebrating their 110th anniversary in a big way. Or in a bigger way, if you will.
For a short time, Ben’s is offering their Holsum Fresh White and Wheat breads with four extra slices at no extra cost. The loaves that are usually 500g are now 630g with wider, shorter slices; a perfect vessel for my thick-cut bologna. Extra slices means extra sammies for the whole family. You can learn more about the Ben’s 110th anniversary, as well as the rest of their baked goods on the Ben’s Bakery website.
To commemorate Ben’s big anniversary, I created an updated (and upgraded) bologna sandwich. A more grown up version of the special treat I loved (still love). Did I mention the only condiment I liked as a kid was cheese whiz? While I still have no shame in frying up a thick slice, my tastes have changed a little over the years. One thing that hasn’t changed is my love for soft white bread.
Gone is the cheese whiz, replaced by gruyere cheese, honey mustard and mayonnaise. Where once there was bologna now is mortadella. But rest assured, there’s still no lettuce to be found (and forget about kale). Mortadella is basically the Italian version of bologna — it actually comes from Bologna — but has small cubes of pork fat in it, making it a deliciously fatty upgrade. Along with a rich gruyere and fancy French honey mustard, this is a sandwich for my developed tastebuds. And remember, the key is not to toast the bread; the warmth of the fried mortadella almost melts the fresh Ben’s and makes for an even more delicious sammie.
Fried mortadella sandwich with Ben’s bread
- 2 slices Ben's Holsum Fresh White or Wheat bread
- 1 slice of thick-cut mortadella (ask your local butcher to slice it)
- 1 tbsp butter
- Gruyere Cheese
- 1 slather of Honey Mustard
- 1 slather of Mayonnaise
- Heat a frying pan to medium heat. Add butter.
- Fry bologna until the edges are nice and crispy.
- Slather one side of bread with honey mustard, the other with mayonnaise.
- Add as much gruyere cheese to the slice with the mayonnaise — I put 2-3 thick slices.
- Add bologna to sandwich.
- Inhale fried bologna sandwich.