Throughout the past several months, everyone’s been reaching for comfort food as the coronavirus pandemic drags on. And truly, there’s no food more comforting than a sandwich, especially the luxe offerings from Deep Ellum pop-up Sandoitchi.
Operating out of the kitchen of Niwa Japanese Barbecue, Sandoitchi focuses on a lunchtime staple in Japan: the sando. Made with milk bread and fillings like egg salad or chicken katsu, the sandwiches have quickly developed a cult following and regularly sell out in minutes after ordering goes live on the weekends. The most indulgent of these offerings, though, is a $75 wagyu sando that’s showered in black truffles and gold leaf.
“The first week we sold out in about five minutes.” Tran says. “We got emails, comments, DMs. The feedback was amazing. We doubled the volume, released it again, and sold out in two minutes.” Only a limited number of the sandos are available each week, thanks in large part to the scarcity of the A5 Hokkaido wagyu beef that’s tucked inside.
Eater got a behind-the-scenes look at the making of what could be the city’s most decadent takeout option. Scope out the process below courtesy of photographer Kathy Tran.
First, a massive slab of A5 wagyu beef is coated in egg wash and freshly made panko breadcrumbs.
Then, the steak is quickly (and carefully) deep-fried to crisp up the outside while gently cooking the interior to a rare internal temperature.
Next, soft Japanese milk bread is sliced thick and toasted until golden brown.
Then, black summer truffle is shaved thinly and piled on top of the fried steak. Any leftover pieces are finely chopped and mixed into Kewpie mayonnaise that coats both sides of the bread.
After the crusts are cut off, the sandwich is sliced into four equal pieces. The cut side of the steak is slathered in a savory sauce made with soy, koji, vinegar, and sugar.
Next, the sandwich is placed inside a wooden box and finished off with a flourish of salt and dehydrated lime zest, then gilded with edible gold leaf and even more shaved truffle.
Voila, the finished product:
Need to get your hands on this sandwich? Sandoitchi’s website opens for orders on Sundays at 6 p.m. Check the pop-up on Instagram for ordering details and the full menu.