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Paying Homage to America’s Favorite Sandwich

Grilled cheese. Even at first mention, you can already imagine the gooey crunch of this melt-in-your-mouth sandwich. It’s an American classic and deserves a celebration. So today, we recognize the popular sandwich on its special day, National Grilled Cheese Day!

 

A unique aspect about grilled cheese is its ability to satisfy children and adults alike. Its popularity with vast audiences has had chefs around the globe reinventing the classic and making it their own. Before it became a classic staple on menus across the country, it’s history tells us the story of how it came to be. Here are a few tidbits of information about America’s favorite sandwich.

 

  1. It’s the best thing since sliced bread! Grilled cheese sandwiches became the norm in American households shortly after the invention of sliced bread, because it was an easy and inexpensive meal for the whole family in the 1920s. The difference between our understanding of the sandwich then and now, though, is these sandwiches were open faced – a piece of bread toasted and topped with shredded American cheese.
  2. What’s in a name? The term “grilled cheese” appeared for the first time in print in the 1960s. Before that, it was called a number of different things, before it settled on its signature nomenclature.
  3. Make it your own! The grilled cheese may be a staple, but people are always finding new ways to make this meal fancy, fresh and deliciously original. Try your hand at adding in some new flavors like bacon, tomato or avocado. Or, keep it classic.

 

Pop by your neighborhood Atlanta Bread today to celebrate National Grilled Cheese Day with friends and family. Or, if you are on the go, grab a grilled cheese from us – it’s a perfect on-the-go meal! You can order ahead online or through our app.

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Fresh Sandwich

15 Atlanta Bread Favorites Perfect for Your Spring Picnic

Spring is in the air. Celebrate the great outdoors while munching on some of your favorites from Atlanta Bread. Here are our top 15 items perfect for your outdoor adventure.

  1. ABC Signature sandwich. Roast beef, turkey, ham, provolone, pepperoncini, mayo and spicy mustard on a fresh-baked baguette.
    Signature
  2. Shrimp Po’ Boy. Here for a limited time only! Seasoned shrimp tossed with all-natural, sriracha mayo served with leafy greens and tomato on a fresh-baked French roll.
    ABC---Shrimp-Po-Boy---Facebook
  3. Caprese sandwich. Mozzarella, tomato and pesto on ciabatta.
    Caprese
  4. Bella Chicken sandwich. Chicken, pesto, mayo and provolone on Mediterranean focaccia.
    Bella Chicken Sandwich
  5. California Avocado sandwich. Avocado, provolone and dill sauce on tomato onion focaccia.
    California Avocado
  6. Chicken Waldorf sandwich. Chicken, dried cranberries, fresh apples, walnuts and mayo on cranberry walnut bread.
    Chicken waldor
  7. Turkey Bacon Avocado. Served on nine-grain bread with lemon basil aioli.
    Turkey Bacon Avocado
  8. Pacific Chicken wrap. All-natural chicken, tomatoes, avocados, sesame seeds, chili flakes and cilantro served with a side of Thai peanut sauce.
    Great Eats Pacific Chicken 600x400
  9. Steakhouse Roast Beef sandwich. Served with mushrooms and provolone on ciabatta, and a side of au jus.
    Steakhouse roast beef
  10. Chicken Pesto sandwich. Chicken, tomato, basil and pesto with Havarti cheese on focaccia.
    Chicken pesto

    Salads galore! Grab a fork and dive in. These delicious dishes require a few utensils, but we promise it’s worth a bite of your favorite Atlanta Bread salads.

  11. Balsamic Bleu. Mixed greens, walnuts, dried cranberries, bleu cheese crumbles, apples, tomatoes, red onion and balsamic vinaigrette.
  12. Chopstix Chicken. Chicken, tomato, romaine lettuce, chow mein noodles, mandarin oranges, almonds & sesame ginger dressing.
    Lo Mein
  13. Greek Salad. Romaine lettuce, feta, pepperoncini, kalamata olives, red onion, tomato and Greek dressing.
    Greek Salad
  14. Creole Shrimp Caesar. Here for a limited time only! Crisp romaine lettuce, topped with shaved parmesan, fresh-baked croutons, seasoned shrimp and all-natural Caesar dressing.
    Creole Shrimp Salad
  15. Cobb Salad. Mixed greens, bleu cheese crumbles, bacon, diced egg, tomato, parsley and avocado with sesame ginger dressing.
    Cobb Salad

No matter the season or the weather, Atlanta Bread has the perfect dish to top off your picnic basket. Planning a picnic soon? Skip the line and grab and go when you place your Atlanta Bread order online today!

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Quinoa Salad

Vegetarians – Does Eating Out Have to Be a Challenge?

One of the biggest challenges vegetarians face is dining with friends. They sometimes feel guilty about steering the group away from places that would be a better fit for their meat eating friends, but does it need to be a major issue?

Most modern restaurants have vegetarian options and will even customize a dish to your diet upon request. The exceptions would be places where a customer has simply never requested a vegetarian option, such as rural diners in the Midwest or barbecue joints.   Even places you wouldn’t consider vegetarian friendly will serve salads and sides that are meat free. These options may not be ideal but they’re likely adequate. Who wants to settle for adequate, though?

What about meat eaters who have vegetarian friends? It’s more probablewe’re the ones making plans. Many meat-eaters have never considered vegetarian foods until they are exposed to a friend or acquaintance who expresses a desire to avoid meats. How do we ensure we find a place that includes our vegetarian friends? In this case, the Internet is your best asset.

Most restaurants publish their menu online, but certain restaurant types are a safe bet even without looking. For instance, a place that serves gourmet grilled cheese sandwiches will almost always have a selection of meat-free options. Pizza is another safe bet, as making meat free pizza is simple. Pasta is another safe choice, because many pasta dishes are not only vegetarian, but vegan friendly. Basil pesto pasta, anyone?

Nothing is simpler than a sandwich shop. Almost every sandwich shop in the US has vegetarian sandwiches. Even if the shop doesn’t offer vegetarian options, a request to ‘hold the meat’ on an otherwise perfect sandwich will usually work. A specialty sandwich shop without a selection of vegetarian options is almost unheard of these days.

Breakfast is always a good choice, and many restaurants will serve breakfast foods all day. Even for a meat-eater, breakfast for lunch can be a fun change of pace – Belgian waffles are not just for Sunday brunch anymore. Given the number of vegetarian items on the normal breakfast menu, finding something delicious should be simple.

Most people who look at a tremendous array of options on a menu don’t consider the limited options that may be available for vegetarians. As long as we are aware of the needs and wants of every member of our group, we can make more informed choices. The most important thing to remember is that a mindful choice and a little creativity will go a long way.

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Turkey Cranberry Sandwich

The Evolution of Sandwiches – A History of Taste

The sandwich is an enormous part of American culture, but where did it come from? Any geography buff would tell you there is an island chain in the south Atlantic called the South Sandwich Archipelago, but why would anyone name it that? The chain of islands was named for the same man as the food, and both in the 1700s, although that’s where the similarities end.

 The first written accounts of meat and bread date back to the second century BC, and ancient middle-eastern people ate them all the time. No one named the concoction until arguably 1762 when the 4th Earl of Sandwich, John Montagu, needed something he could eat that wouldn’t interrupt his gambling. Edward Gibbon first wrote the word ‘sandwich’ in his journal as a culinary reference on November 24th of that year, but the first recipe using the word wasn’t published until 1773.  The Americas were still colonial at that time, and would be, as far as the British were concerned, for another decade.

Americans didn’t widely start using the word until the 1830s. ‘Sandwich’ did, however, start appearing in cookbooks as early as 1816. The former colonists simply weren’t keen on calling anything by its British name so soon after the Revolutionary War and the War of 1812. By 1924, however, the New York Times was calling for celebration of sandwiches as a convenient food, and heralding the arrival of the ‘sandwich house,’ a new type of lunch room primarily dedicated to sandwiches and their consumers. Many of the sandwiches from that era seem fairly unappetizing compared to the wonderful examples we have today, but some have survived. One of the earliest American sandwiches, the ham sandwich, is still served everywhere.

In the early days, many of the sandwiches offered by sandwich houses were vegetarian in nature. They used mostly vegetables and spreads, and the focal point was the bread. The meat centric sandwiches were essentially butter, or prepared mustard, with meat and bread. Thankfully, we’ve evolved the sandwich to an amazing array of breads, toppings, fillings and condiments.

Today, sandwich shops have a dizzying array of ingredients to choose from, like bacon and avocado, fresh vegetables, fruits, and nearly any meat you can name. Some of the most delicious sandwiches you can imagine have ingredients that you wouldn’t have considered even a decade ago. Literally anything can be put between two slices of bread and called a sandwich, but knowing which ingredients pair well together and how to bring out the best flavors and textures takes a special kind of skill.

Now we have hot sandwiches like paninis, cold sandwiches like banh mi, vegetarian sandwiches that make good use of cucumber and tomato, the always popular grilled cheese. We have sandwiches with Indian, southwest, Asian, Mediterranean, and a host of other flavors.  All of these choices can make selection a little daunting.

So, what’s with the American love affair with sandwiches? Is it the convenience of a food that can be prepared and taken anywhere? Is it the incredible variety? Is it the unending potential for customization? Many like to think it’s all of the above, but when the average American adult eats over 200 sandwiches per year, one thing is certain: sandwiches are here to stay, and they just keep getting better.

 


Sources:

http://www.bbc.com/news/uk-england-kent-18010424

http://whatscookingamerica.net/History/SandwichHistory.htm

http://www.pbs.org/food/the-history-kitchen/history-sandwich/

http://www.foodtimeline.org/foodsandwiches.html

 

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Healthy Food

Make Eating Healthy A Family Routine

Kids are known for engaging in somewhat risky behaviors. They jump from places most parents feel are too high or run headlong into a bustling crowd without concern. As parents, these are the moments we prefer to avoid. But one situation where we might like for our kids to venture out and take a risk is with what they are willing to eat. Often times it seems like getting them to eat a healthy lunch is just a dream.

 With one in four people admitting to eating fast food on a daily basis and 52% believing that doing taxes is easier than eating healthy, there is clearly an uphill battle when it comes to setting a good example for our kids.*

With all the running around from activity to activity it’s no wonder people settle for what’s fast and easy. But don’t cave in to the pressure of time and eat on the run. What if it really is possible to take your family out for a convenient, healthy lunch – one with less fat and sugar while still full of taste? It isn’t like finding a unicorn, such meals do exist! Eating healthy can happen, you simply have to know where to look. And if you make it a routine and a behavior  you model for them, it’s likely to stick.

It’s no longer out of the norm for restaurants that typically provide high calorie, low nutrition meals to place “healthy” items on the kids menu. But when they are side-by-side with the temptation of tasty, artery-clogging meals, what good does it really do? And how much of a rut do we really want to stay in by ordering those meals? There are plenty of restaurants that carry a menu full of healthy choices and fresh ingredients without so much sugar and fat.

You want to break free, to encourage your kids to try something new. Yes, it’s hard to convince them they can enjoy a healthy lunch just as much as their usual burgers and fries, but have faith in yourself. And give your kids a little credit. Once they’ve tasted the flavors you can find in various pastas, salads, and sandwiches made with fresh, healthy ingredients, their bodies, and their taste buds, will adjust to the new norm.

Now, picture your family in a restaurant where you can grab a quick bite in the midst of your busy lifestyle or you enjoy a leisurely dining experience when the time is right. Finding a place that becomes your dining out standard makes life easier. With an ability to satisfy a variety of tastes, such a restaurant can become a part of your routine without putting you in a rut. Let the place adapt to your pace and desires and soon your family will be eating a healthy lunch or a tasty, fresh dinner without stress.

 Encourage your kids to break free from the traditional kids menu and allow them to take a risk by eating healthy meals full of flavor. You’ll feel like you’re jumping from boring to exceptional and running headlong into a new adventure. Now that’s a behavior we all want to experience!

 


 

https://www.dosomething.org/facts/11-facts-about-american-eating-habits