There’s Only One Right Way To Build The Ultimate BLT - Men's Health Magazine Australia

There’s Only One Right Way To Build The Ultimate BLT

At the right time, in the right context, few things taste better than this classic sandwich. It’s worth making properly.

A BLT is such a simple sandwich that it’s basically self-explanatory. It’s right there in the name—baconlettuce, tomato. Besides the bread (implied) and the mayo (a given), you don’t need much more instruction to slap the thing together.

And, as long as you follow these very basic instructions, there’s no real wrong way to make a BLT. But as any sandwich lover knows, there are a few key details that separate a good BLT from an OMFG BLT.

Andrew Markert and Bart Hutchins, co-chefs of Fight Club, a sandwich-centric restaurant in Washington, D.C., know this. When tomato season rolls around, they’re featuring a creation called the Heir to the BLT. The sandwich features heirloom tomatoes, house-made black pepper bacon, pistachio butter, brown butter mayo, and shredded lettuce on sourdough.

And as you can probably pull out from that menu description, they’ve thoughtfully considered each aspect of the BLT and perfect each ingredient so that all the elements elevate one another.

Here’s their approach to doing the same at home

Buy better bacon

Thin strips of packaged bacon are easily overpowered by the bread and tomato. Seek out smoked, black-peppered slab bacon that you can cut into very thin slices. Many butchers carry the stuff; if it’s not peppered, just grind some on later. About 450 grams will make four sandwiches.


Panfrying bacon can turn it too brittle. Instead, place the slices on a high-rimmed sheet pan and slow-roast them in a 120°C oven for about two hours. The bacon’s fat will render slowly, resulting in tender, meaty strips that are slightly chewy. Yes, it’s worth it.

Prep the ingredients

You want the bacon warm when it hits the sandwich, so organise everything else. Slice 1 large heirloom tomato the same thickness as the bacon, for balance. Then thinly slice ½ head iceberg. Cut 8 slices of sourdough, each moderately thick, and toast them till golden brown. Finally, break out your best mayo, which will
have the right acidity, sweetness and creaminess.


The order: bread slice, bacon, tomato (sprinkled with salt and pepper), lettuce, bread slice (slathered with 1 Tbsp mayo). The theory: biting into the bread, you’ll first taste the glory of the bacon, which prevents the lettuce from spilling and the tomato from slipping. And as the mayo melts, it lightly dresses everything.

Jar and spoon with delicious pistachio butter on white background, top view

Three Ways to Make a BLT Even Awesomer:

Pistachio Butter

In a food processor, pulverize ½ cup roasted, unsalted, shelled pistachios with a pinch each of salt and sugar. With the motor running on low, drizzle in enough canola oil till peanut-butter-like in consistency. Spread about 1 Tbsp on the inside of the bottom slice of bread. It’s fatty. It’s nutty. It plays well with bacon.

A Pickle

“Every BLT should come with a pickle,” says Markert. “It’s a palate cleanser.” Dill, garlic dill, half-sour—doesn’t matter, as long as it’s in spear-form to get that crunch.

A Drink

Markert prefers a root beer, the sweetness playing off the saltiness of the sandwich. If you’re looking for something harder, both Markert and Hutchins covet Hamm’s lager, but other American macro-brews like Bud, Coors, and Miller offer a similar refreshing crispness too.

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