• Saturday, April 13, 2024

FEATURES

Instagrammer’s passion project sees him try over 600 sandwiches ‘from history’

The beauty of “Sandwiches of History” lies in its global reach (Representative image: iStock)

By: Vibhuti Pathak

While one person savours different types of dishes and cuisines, Barry Enderwick, a consultant living in Silicon Valley, has tasted multiple types of sandwiches, which we cannot even imagine, and he has made it pretty evident on his Instagram account.

Enderwick, after a college expulsion, eventually found his footing in graphic design. In 2001, he took a chance and joined a little-known startup called Netflix. The following eleven years became a real-world education in branding, marketing, PR, and navigating the complexities of the business world.

But beyond work, his passions include running, cooking, and exploring the world of craft beer, not just sandwiches. He also has a penchant for trying oddly flavoured potato chips and enjoys a good round of golf. If San Diego were still his home, body surfing would undoubtedly top his list of hobbies.

There’s more to a sandwich than meets the eye. Tucked between two slices of bread can lie a wealth of history, a snapshot of a particular time and place. Barry Enderwick, the mastermind behind the popular social media project Sandwiches of History. Through his delightful videos, Enderwick isn’t just satisfying his appetite; he’s taking viewers on a delicious journey through the ages.

It all began in 2018 when Enderwick stumbled upon “The Up-to-Date Sandwich Book,” a vintage cookbook from 1909. Intrigued by the quirky recipes, he recreated them in his kitchen. This simple act sparked a passion project that has since garnered him nearly 500,000 followers across TikTok and Instagram.

 

Enderwick’s approach is refreshingly straightforward. Clad in his signature patterned button-downs, he guides viewers through the historic recipes, offering clear instructions and a healthy dose of humour. Each bite is followed by an honest assessment, with Enderwick readily admitting to tweaks he believes might elevate the dish. This “plus it up” philosophy encourages viewers to experiment and create their culinary masterpieces.

The beauty of “Sandwiches of History” lies in its global reach. Enderwick delves into culinary traditions from across the globe, from the classic American chicken salad sandwich of 1927 to the Mexican mollete, a delightful open-faced combination of refried beans and cheese. He’s even explored the ancient Chinese rou jia mo, a meat-filled delight dating back to the 3rd century BC.

Adding a splash of variety to his repertoire, Enderwick occasionally welcomes guest stars onto his show. Renowned chefs and actors like H. Jon Benjamin and Rob Huebel have graced his kitchen, offering their unique takes on historical bites. Another endearing segment, “Sandwiches of Our History,” invites viewers to share cherished family recipes, fostering a sense of community and preserving culinary traditions.

Beyond the historical intrigue, Enderwick possesses a remarkable ability to breathe new life into potentially bland recipes. A recent example is the “Smart Sandwich” from a 1923 cookbook. This seemingly dull combination of cheese paste, Worcestershire sauce, and butter on bread transforms into a delightful treat with the simple addition of grilling.

This passion project is a far cry from Enderwick’s day job working as a consultant. His love for food stems from his fiancée Christine and her family, whose Mediterranean cooking opened his eyes to a world of flavour. While some viewers delight in the more eccentric finds, Enderwick confesses a fondness for a more recent creation: the tomato sandwich from New Orleans’ Turkey and the Wolf restaurant.

This deceptively simple recipe, featuring sunflower seeds, mayonnaise, lemon juice, dill, and basil, is a testament to the power of fresh ingredients and clever combinations.

The future bodes well for “Sandwiches of History.” With a cookbook release planned for Fall 2024, Enderwick’s culinary journey shows no signs of slowing down. From his humble beginnings as a man simply enjoying a sandwich in his kitchen, he has built a thriving online community, all thanks to his infectious enthusiasm and a genuine love for food history.

So, the next time you reach for a sandwich, take a moment to consider the stories it might hold. After all, thanks to Barry Enderwick, every bite can be a delicious adventure through time.

 

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