Turkey and Ham Question

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Joined Mar 11, 2010
I run a higher end Burger joint and for the summer I am adding cold Turkey and Ham sandwiches.  I would like to cut the meat fairly thick 1/4" or more and use it for sandwiches and salads.  My Wife thinks it should be thin sliced, she likes it so thin you can see through it!

Does anyone think my customers will be turned off if I use thicker cuts??

Thanks
 
1,447
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Joined Apr 3, 2008
yes, at least, i would. I agree with your wife and I will tell why.  1. mouthfeel- thinner chews better, a thick piece of meat "bites" at the teeth and generally feels clunkier in the mouth while chewing.  while thinner cuts are a silkier feel. 2. here is some psuedo science for you as i am not a scientist though I may be mad. Thinner cuts mean more surface area per 4 oz portion. the air trapped between layers of meat allow more flavor and aroma to come off of the meat as it has more room to breathe. try it, take 3 cuts that make 4oz then make 6 cuts that make 4oz see which ends up being more flavorfull. I bet you a dime to a hole in a donut which one wins./img/vbsmilies/smilies/biggrin.gif
 
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Gunnar is on the money.
I want to add that the thiner slices will be easier to fold/roll, creating a larger looking sandwich.
 
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We use ham, turkey, Roast beef, pastrami on our sandwich line. IMHO, all processed lunch meats should be sliced thin. I do like hand carved pastrami, when its coming from a good Quality Jewish deli. I have also had carved Baked Ham ,a bit thinker for sandwiches, and it melted in your mouth. I would say it depends on the quality and tenderness of the meats your using. If its processed its firmer, and needs to be thinner.................Chef Bill
 
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Because my poor slicer has gone to a better place and I don't have budget room for a new one yet, my cuts are thicker, hand cut.  Even so, I get the cuts as thin as I can manage.  Luckily my customers kinda like the 'made at home but not by me' style of my sandwiches.

A 1/4" slab of meat on a sandwich strikes me as, hmm... not sure how to say it... lazy?  No offense intended, but if I were served that I would wonder if it were machine assembled.  There would seem no dimension, or craft, involved in the making.  As Jim mentioned there'd be a detraction from the overall sandwich thickness and therefore the perceived value.

Gunnar's surface area comment seems to make sense as well.  I'm kinda hungry... I think I'll go test the theory /img/vbsmilies/smilies/rollsmile.gif


P.S.  for salads I always cube or thick-cut-and-shred the meats.  In that case I would go thicker than 1/4"  (oop, except for steak... it still gets hand-cut thin even when I have a working slicer)
 
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1,447
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I should have said make sure to fold or roll your meat If you were to just flat stack your meat your not doing yourself any favors (your customers either) and that i do mean processed meat as well. 
 
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i think you wife is right, thin is definately better, and more attractive, thick will make the sandwich unattractive and therefore discourage customers.
 
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Joined Mar 11, 2010
Thanks for "almost" all the replies.  It was a big help!  Turkey is on the menu starting today.

Thanks for the help.
 
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Joined Feb 17, 2010
Gunnar hit the nail on the head... Thin to win..... I have a mobile kitchen these days...High end sands and burgers, everything sliced thin  to order. Looks better, feels better, tastes better.

Also, would be a little harder to control portion size with a 1/4" slice, as the size of the piece of meat varies.

Hey gunnar... Ever been to the Cheese Shop in Newcastle??  Have the Rat Trap?.. Good Stuff!!
 
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lol, the Rat Trap sandwich is a staple diet in Newcastle.  Do you know Kieth and Candy the original owners of that deli? Candy was the one who designed the Rat Trap sandwich, then they sold the deli. My grandmother ,Beulah, ran the Whistle Stop Antique store there forever.
 
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Don't know any of them... Was just a fan. Great sandwich... I modeled on of my sands after the rat trap.  And if you were lucky, Tri Tip sands on Friday!

I grew up in Grass Valley/Nevada City, lived in Sac for many years... Now up North.
 
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Joined Aug 21, 2009
I say the thinner the better as well.  When it's thin, you can always add more meat to fill out the look of the sandwich and the taste is still melt in your mouth but the thick slices don't have the same appeal for me. 
 

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