Baguette Sandwich Recipe
Fresh, crunchy and with a flavor of France, a baguette sandwich really is one of the simple pleasures in life, bringing a satisfying bite to your picnic, lunch or even a light supper. The secret to the ultimate baguette sandwiches is the freshest bread and delicious ingredients, all enhanced by the right dressing or sauce.
The filling for the perfect baguette sandwich is a personal choice but there are a few classics you really do need to try. We take out the bread board and rummage through the refrigerator to bring you the lowdown on what makes a delicious yet easy baguette recipe.
What is a Baguette?
Also known as French bread, the baguette is a long white loaf that is characterized by its crispy crust. So important is the crisp on the crust in France, that any baguette found with a softer outer will be deemed ‘stale’ and past its freshest best.
The secret to the baguette is its simplicity, as it is only made from four ingredients – flour, water, yeast and salt. These simple ingredients work together to create a basic lean dough that bakes to a hard crust and soft center, which has an almost chewy texture. For the fact lovers among you, a typical baguette measures 60-70cm, or between 2-2.4 feet in length.
The traditional long and thin shape of the baguette comes from its origins in France sometime in the 18th Century, when the French government dictated that bakers were not allowed to work before 4am. As bread was and still is a staple of the French breakfast, the enterprising bakers had to create a loaf that was quicker to bake than the traditional round loaves and so the long and stick-like baguette was born.
The Best Baguette Sandwich Recipes
Less is most definitely more when it comes to making a French bread sandwich but that doesn’t mean you miss out on flavor and taste.
We take a look at a few easy to make baguette sandwich recipes that wouldn’t look out of place served in a chic Parisian pavement café.
Go Classic French Cheese and Ham
The cheese and ham sandwich is a universal favorite and can be found in a host of tasty guises, from the grilled cheese to a lunchbox sandwich staple using cheddar, pickles and wholemeal bread. But when it comes to a baguette, the cheese and ham is elevated to a whole new, crunchy bread level.
With a classic French cheese and ham baguette, both butter and top-quality ingredients figure large, and there is no skimping on either as you need a softer filling to balance with the bread’s harder crust. For a classic cheese and ham French sandwich, you will need:
- 1 French baguette
- Butter (at room temperature for easy spreading)
- 3 tablespoons Dijon mustard
- 8 ounces of thinly sliced unsmoked ham – ideally French ham (jambon de Paris) but quality deli ham will work just as well
- 8 ounces of thinly sliced Gruyère cheese
- 8-10 cornichons or gherkins, sliced longways
How to make:
The beauty of a classic French cheese and ham sandwich is that it is quick and easy to make but is a snack you will want to take your time to eat and savor. Here’s what you need to do.
- First up, you will need to cut your fresh baguette in half, lengthwise, then liberally spread one half with butter and the other with the Dijon mustard
- Take the bottom half of the French bread and layer on the ham, then the cheese before topping with the thinly sliced cornichons. If you are extra hungry, you can always go for two layers of the filling
- Place the top half of the cut baguette onto the layered filling and gently press down to close your French sandwich
- Cut into four equal portions and serve, with some extra pickles and a little green salad.
Note: you can switch this baguette sandwich up by your choice of cheese – replace the Gruyère for brie, provolone, camembert or your own favorite cheese.
Blue Cheese and Bacon Baguette
If you are fancying a warm French bread snack, you can’t get more delicious than tangy blue cheese and freshly grilled, crispy bacon, all given an added crunch, thanks to a freshly baked baguette. If this sounds a little bit of you, here’s what you need:
- 1 French baguette
- Soft butter, for spreading
- 8 ounces of bacon
- 8 ounces blue cheese
- Generous handful of rocket leaves
- 4 sweet red peppers, roughly quartered
How to make:
- Grill the quartered sweet peppers until they soften, and the skins are starting to bubble; cook (grill or shallow fry) the bacon until deliciously crisp
- While the bacon and peppers finish cooking, halve your baguette lengthways and butter both sides
- Layer with the rocket lettuce and some of the red peppers. Now add the warm bacon and top with the sliced blue cheese so the heat from the bacon starts to melt it. Top off with a few more peppers and a little dressing if you like
- Place the top half of the baguette onto the filling and gently press down to seal. Cut into four equal portions and serve – to be eaten straight away!
Roast and Garlic Mayonnaise French Sandwich
If you’re ever unsure as to what to do with leftover meat from a delicious roast dinner, then introduce it to a baguette and you will find a match made in sandwich heaven! Lamb or beef are rich flavors that work deliciously with the soft inner and hard outer texture of a baguette, but other roast meats are a good choice too. Here’s what you need to make the ultimate roast meat sandwich:
- 1 French baguette
- Soft butter for spreading
- Generous slices of roast meat – lamb or beef are ideal
- 6-8 tbs French mayonnaise
- 2 garlic cloves
- Salt and pepper
- I small red onion
Good handful of rocket leaves
How to make:
- First stop – make the garlic mayonnaise by adding the crushed garlic to the mayo and mix well. Season with salt and pepper. If you are using lamb, you could also add in some finely chopped mint
- Warm the French bread through in the oven. While it’s warming, thinly slice the red onion and fry off in a little melted butter. (Or you can leave the onion uncooked for a bit of extra crunch)
- Slice your roast meat into medium slices and pop onto a plate and warm for one minute in the microwave
- Cut your warmed baguette in half lengthways and generously butter both sides. Spread the rocket leaves on to the bottom half and top with the warmed meat
- Add your red onion (cooked or raw) on top of the meat, then generously spoon on your garlicky mayonnaise. Put the top of the baguette back on and press to seal.
- Now serve, warm – totally delicious!