The history of the club sandwich is a hotly contested one. Some reckon it was invented in the Union Club of New York City, a private members’ club founded in the 1830s. Others attribute it to another club, the Saratoga Club in New York state. Whatever its origin, everyone can agree this multi-layered sandwich is a top-tier lunch option.

This version by Billy Hannigan, executive chef at Sydney’s The Charles Grand Brasserie and Bar, requires a solid amount of effort for a sandwich, but it’s well worth it. Three slices of bread encase chicken, bacon, cheese and salad, and this compilation works just as well for a working-from-home lunch as it does for a late-afternoon snack accompanied by a Martini and potato crisps.

“We make the crisps in-house, but the frying might be quite dangerous at home, so store-bought chips like Red Rock Deli Sea Salt will suffice,” Hannigan tells Broadsheet.

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The Charles’s “le grand” club sandwich

Makes 4 sandwiches
Preparation time: 30 minutes, plus 30 minutes’ resting time
Cooking time: 1 hour 15 minutes

Ingredients
1 whole free-range chicken
250g lean, streaky bacon
1 baby cos lettuce
2 ripe roma tomatoes
12 slices white bread
100g whole-egg mayonnaise
100g onion jam
1 packet good-quality sliced cheddar
Toothpicks
Potato crisps

Method
Preheat oven to 200°C. Place the chicken in the oven for 45 minutes. Remove when golden brown and let rest for 30 minutes while preparing the rest of ingredients.

Place bacon in oven and cook for 10 minutes until crisp.

Finely slice lettuce and tomatoes and set aside.

Toast the white bread in the oven at 180°C for 4 minutes.

Once chicken has cooled, use a fork to pull apart into pieces.

To assemble, on one slice of bread spread on the mayonnaise and on another spread the onion jam. Place pulled apart roast chicken and a slice of cheese on the mayonnaise layer, then add lettuce. Stack the slice of bread with onion jam on top. Place the bacon and sliced tomato on top of the onion jam, followed by the final slice of bread.

Slice sandwich into four and hold together with toothpicks. Serve with a side of potato crisps.

thecharles.sydney