Serious Sandwiches: 'The Sangweech'

Photograph courtesy of Jason Perlow

I'm not exactly sure where the term "Sangweech" came from, but I know I want one. Look at that thing. The photo was posted to the Serious Eats Flickr photo group by Jason Perlow, a friend of Serious Eats and publisher of the blog Off the Broiler. Normally I leave the serious sandwich-making to professionals, but if this photo is any indication, greatness can be achieved in your own home, with an incredibly large ciabatta loaf and the desire to stuff said loaf with more cold cuts than one would consider reasonably safe.

What I'm saying is, try this at home—but you may need building permits.

I know it's cruel to post about a sandwich that you can't buy, so to make up for it, below are Perlow's instructions for making a Sangweech of your own.

A sandwich of this magnitude is quite an undertaking, and Perlow has some more tips for you:

  • Choose your bread wisely: Whenever you're making a sandwich this large, you need a sturdy bread to stand up to all the ingredients. Ciabatta is perfect, because it is wide, tall, and has a very thick crust. You do not want to use a soft bread for this
  • Press the sandwich overnight: Use something heavy, as detailed above. It makes the Sangweech more portable and easier to eat
  • Sidestep the sog: Avoid using anything with a high water content, like iceberg lettuce or ripe tomatoes. When the sandwich gets pressed, the water in those ingredients will find its way into the bread. Instead, use toppings such as basil, arugula, or a mesclun mix. If you can't fathom the thought of a sandwich without tomatoes, used sun-dried tomatoes or serve fresh ones on the side
  • Go easy on the dressing: The same liquid principle applies here. Use less dressing than you think the Sangweech needs. Everything else should be piled on in abundance

And the final tip comes from me. The easiest way to enjoying your very own Sangweech? Make friends with a guy like Perlow.

About the author: Zach Brooks is the proprietor of Midtown Lunch, where he blogs about affordable lunchtime eats in Midtown Manhattan. The guy knows his sandwiches.

Serious Sandwiches: 'The Sangweech'

About This Recipe

This recipe appears in: Look Who's Talkin': Recent Comments We Have Known and Loved


  • Mike's Deli Sliced Provolone
  • Dilusso Genoa salami (extra aged)
  • Don Michele prosciutto di Parma
  • capicola
  • mortadella
  • Oldani salami
  • hot soppresatta
  • marinated artichokes
  • preserved Italian red peppers
  • basil and arugula (from Perlow's garden)
  • Mike's Deli fresh mozzarella
  • olive oil and balsamic vinegar


  1. 1

    Start with a whole ciabatta loaf, cut it in half, and layer it with assorted goodies. Perlow's are from Mike's Deli on Arthur Avenue in the Bronx, but you can assemble your own with whatever equivalent ingredients you have easy access to.

  2. 2

    After assembling it, put the sandwich into a milk crate with barbell weights on top, to "flatten it into submission" overnight in the refrigerator.


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