No edible item is more New Yorky than the breakfast sandwich, made with egg, American cheese, and bacon, sausage, or boiled ham on a kaiser roll — available at nearly every deli and bodega. But this cherished sandwich has been modified by time and contemporary preferences, and now variations can be found, or created. Appearing every Wednesday for the rest of summer and into the fall, this column will ferret out those wayward modifications.
Egg, Ham, and Cheese Crepe
We’ve seen New York breakfast sandwiches made on all sorts of breads besides a kaiser roll — most notably a brioche or potato roll, the first used to make the sandwich more effete and luxurious, the second to increase its earthiness or perhaps make it more Andean — though we must conclude the kaiser roll is optimal. We’ve even seen some sandwiches made on slices of whole wheat bread, though most often as an expedient of coffee bars that stock only one type of bread.
But what if you dispense with bread entirely? Such is the case at new Village crepe spot Jean Le Gourmand. As you watch, a pair of machines blop out the batter onto a series of big, round, rotating griddles, on which the batter cooks with little help from the cashiers that seem to be running the place. The pancakes turn out glove soft, and neither sweet nor savory. They make a perfect platform for the scrambled egg, bacon, and gruyere cheese, which melt and ooze wonderfully as you cut into the $7 rolled pancake. It wouldn’t be a bad idea to explore the other 25 or so crepe choices, either. 301 Sixth Ave., between Carmine and West 4th streets, Greenwich Village