A bologna sandwich is a ho-hum but ubiquitous lunch option, but there are ways to make it a bit more interesting. In the South, for example, cooks give this sandwich a bit of a twist by frying the bologna first. They simply place the bologna slices onto a lightly buttered griddle or nonstick pan and fry them up until they are browned. The thicker the cut of Bologna, the better, so ask for the bologna from the deli counter instead of buying it prepackaged.
- 1 tablespoon canola oil
- 1 to 2 slices bologna (thick-cut)
- 1 slice American cheese
- 1 teaspoon mayonnaise
- 2 slices white bread
Heat the canola oil in a nonstick saute pan over medium-high heat.
Place the bologna in the pan and cook until brown, about 1 to 2 minutes on each side.
Top with a slice of American cheese and remove the pan from the heat.
Spread mayonnaise on the insides of both slices of bread and place the fried bologna and melted cheese on one piece. Top with the other piece of bread and serve.
Although delicious as is, you can include different ingredients or condiments to change this sandwich up a bit. Slip in a slice or two of tomato to add a bit of color and nutrition to the sandwich. Or top with chili for a hearty lunch that's heavy on meat and flavor. This sandwich is also delicious with a layer of coleslaw nestled in the middle.
To add some bite, consider swapping out the mayo for mustard. You can go for the usual yellow mustard variety, which is the most mellow, but if you want more heat, spread on a bit of spicy brown mustard, which amps up the firepower and is robust enough to match the strong flavor of fried bologna. Dijon mustard packs a lot of punch but in a more sophisticated way, and whole-grain mustard has the zing of Dijon along with a significant texture to make it a satisfying choice on a fried bologna sandwich.
For a more upscale version of this humble sandwich, use artisan or French bread or a brioche bun instead of white bread. You can also grill the completed sandwich in a bit of butter for a crispy exterior and even more decadent lunch.
A fried bologna sandwich makes a powerful statement so any side dishes served along with are definitely not the main attraction. But what they can do is balance out the heaviness—and the guilt—of this sandwich. Good choices are cream or vinegar slaw, homegrown tomatoes (if they are not on the sandwich), pasta salad filled with veggies, or potato salad. Less healthy but tasty options are french fries or potato chips—kettle cooked sea salt and vinegar, sea salt, and pepper, or plain are the best choices.