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Thursday, April 14, 2016


Chef Michael Wignall is executive head chef at Gidleigh Park Hotel in Devon, UK
Editor’s note: Each month, British Airways “Club” magazine publishes as a regular feature a club sandwich recipe contributed by a world class chef.  BA is kind to share the recipe with bloggers.  In its April 2016 edition “Club Magazine” interviewed Chef Michael Wignall.  Here’s his unusual take on the Club Sandwich:

When two-Michelin star chef Michael Wignall took over from Michael Caines as executive head chef at Gidleigh Park, The Sunday London Times called it the ‘highest-profile handover on the British restaurant scene’. The new appointee took time out from the kitchen to share his thoughts on this most classic of dishes

“I use the Club Sandwich as a benchmark of a hotel’s quality. You can tell a lot from the standard of ingredients and care that goes in to making it.

“The best I’ve had was at Tokyo’s Mandarin Oriental; the worst at a hotel in Bali. It was such a surprise to see it on the menu, so I had to try it. Unfortunately, the strong winds blowing on the beach worked against me: I had a mouthful of grit by the end.

“I’d give a seasonal twist to the Club Sandwich. In the summer, I’d use Isle of Wight vine tomatoes, poached chicken, crispy braised coxcombs, and hen’s egg-and-truffle mayonnaise. As it’s currently game season, I’d opt for an organic duck egg, duck bresaola, braised duck tongue and watercress mayonnaise.  Enjoy.

Michael Wignall’s seasonal duck Club Sandwich
(makes one sandwich)

3 eggs

2 medium slices of duck bresaola

3 slices of bread, lightly toasted

½ avocado

Juice of ¼ lime

1 dessert spoon of mayonnaise

250g watercress

4g Dijon mustard

8g red wine vinegar

20g water

100ml sunflower oil

½ pear, peeled and diced

3 small duck tongues, braised

Fresh truffle, grated



1. Make an egg yolk confit by cooking three whole eggs in water at 64­°C for 44 minutes, before transferring to a pan of cold water for 10 minutes.

2. Break the eggs and rinse away the white under slow cold running water. You should be left with a clean, semi-soft yolk. Beat the yolks and pour into a piping bag. Leave to one side.

3. Divide the slices of duck bresaola between two slices of toasted bread.

4. Blend the avocado with the lime juice and mayonnaise, then spread onto the third piece of toast.

5. Now blend the watercress with the Dijon mustard, red wine vinegar and water until smooth. Then slowly add the sunflower oil to make an emulsion, and season.

6. Build the sandwich, starting with the first piece of bread and duck bresaola, followed by the avocado layer, then the second layer of duck. Trim all the edges so it’s uniform.

7. To finish, pipe the egg yolk confit and watercress emulsion on top, add the cubes of pear, and place the duck tongues. Garnish with freshly grated truffle and yarrow.

Michael’s colourful yet delicate Club Sandwich, full of flavor.

One of the most respected chefs in the UK, Michael Wignall has won Michelin stars in every kitchen he has headed since being awarded his first star in 1993.  Michael is famed for his respect for food and an ever evolving style which creates unique dishes full of flavour and underpinned by a contemporary, less formal approach to fine cuisine.  Describing his food as ‘modern, technical and meaningful’, each element features to add flavour or texture, enticing diners to experience new combinations and ingredients.   

Gidleigh Park

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