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There are too many sub shops out there - so who makes the best subs? Day 1 Lunch: Subway - Bachelor on the Cheap

Who has the best sub sandwich?  The worst? 

20180406_114825For my first sub sandwich of the challenge, I headed to the nearest Subway, the supposed King of the Sub Shop and they are - in terms of sheer number of restaurants and gross sales.  A 2016 restaurant sales report shows Subway at the top of this list with about 26,000 stores nationwide, the next closest truly sub competitor (pun intended) is Jimmy John's with slightly less than 2,500 locations.

So how was my Subway Sub?

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There are too many sub shops out there - so who makes the best subs? - Bachelor on the Cheap

Mike Thayer 2016 (2)By Mike Thayer

Are there that many people out there eating sub sandwiches but not really caring or understanding that they're possibly not eating at the best establishment?  That maybe, just maybe, they're eating only, sadly, at a place they're merely accustomed to, what they've settled to be comfortable with?

It would seem so, otherwise we wouldn't be so inundated with so darn many sub shops around.....  Subway, Jimmy John's, Firehouse Subs, Quizno's, Planet Sub, Schlotzsky's, Jason's Deli, McAlister's Deli and others.....

So in the name of 'Food Science' (cough), I will be undertaking the next Bachelor on the Cheap Challenge:  Who makes the best subs?  I'll be going through the restaurant list, one meal at a time, sampling sub sandwiches from the all national chains.....  What?  Eat nothing but sub sandwiches for lunch AND dinner?  Like I said, done in the name of 'food science'......

Here is "The List" of sub shops/deli joints I'll be trying out during the course of this challenge:

  • Subway
  • Jimmy John's
  • Quiznos
  • Planet Sub
  • Firehouse Subs
  • Schlotzsky's
  • Jason's Deli
  • McAlister's Deli
  • Goodcents Deli Fresh Subs

Who has the best sandwich?  The worst? 

Stay tuned and spend wisely my friends....

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What to do with leftover ham - Bachelor on the Cheap

Mike Thayer 2016 (2)By Mike Thayer

So you've got a bunch of ham leftover from the Easter dinner you made, or ham you were given to take home....  You can't just keep slicing a big thick slice of it off and eating it as is.....  Well, you can, but there's no variety in that.

What else can you do with it?

Lots.

There's the obvious, make a sandwich.  Some ham, Swiss cheese, a little mustard between a couple slices of bread or in a bun....  It's another dose of YUM!

You could grab a box of scalloped potatoes from your pantry, make the potatoes per the box instructions, chunk up some of that ham, throw that in before popping those taters in the oven and boom!  Dinner.  To add a little kick, finely dice up some jalapeno pepper to include in the mix.  TASTY!

You could do a similar thing by grabbing that box of mac & cheese from the pantry and in about 10 minutes, you'll have another lunch or dinner.

Dice some ham up and put it in the fridge for later use.  You can quickly grab that diced ham for a number of dishes.....  Diced ham and scrambled eggs for breakfast; Diced ham on a salad;  Ham fried rice; Ham & beans in the crock pot; Grab some tortillas to make ham & cheese quesadillas; open up a tube of crescent rolls and bake them up with ham and green onion.

There's all kinds of things you can do with leftover ham, have fun with it!

Here's a quick recipe for the grill - Ham Kabobs.

Ingredients:

  • 1 can of pineapple chunks
  • 1 tablespoon yellow mustard
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground clove
  • a splash of orange juice
  • one medium green pepper, cut into 1-inch pieces
  • leftover ham, cut into cubes

Directions:

Fire up the grill.  While the 'outdoor stove' is getting warm and ready to receive, drain the pineapple, saving the juice for a marinade.  Mix that pineapple juice, yellow mustard, clove and orange juice in a small bowl, set aside.  Put the pineapple chunks, green pepper and ham on wooden skewers (you soaked them in water for about 30 minutes, right?).   Grill for about 5-8 minutes over direct heat, basting the kabobs with the marinade and rotating frequently until cooked through.  Makes a great appetizer or side dish!

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Who has the best fast food fish sandwich? They are listed here from worst to first - Bachelor on the Cheap

20180326_184044By Mike Thayer

Burgers, chicken nuggets, pizza, tacos......

What are you supposed to eat when none of the above sounds good?

A crispy fish sandwich of course!

But which fast food joint makes the best fish sandwich? 

In the name of 'food science' (a'hem, cough), I have sampled fish sandwiches from all the national fast food chains I have access to in my neck of the woods that have a fish sandwich on their menu.  Which restaurant and their version of a crispy fish sandwich will get top honors?

I went through the restaurant list, one meal at a time.....  What?  I ate nothing but fish sandwiches for lunch AND dinner, a total of 9 meals? 

Like I said, done in the name of 'food science'......

Here is "The List" of fast food joints offering fish sandwiches, from worst to first:

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Who has the best fast food fish sandwich? - Day 5, Lunch - Bachelor on the Cheap

Who has the best sandwich?  The worst?

Chick-fil-A Fish Sandwich
Available only during Lent

Figuring I was saving the best for last, I headed to Popeyes for lunch and my final fish sandwich of the challenge... But as I was standing in line and reviewing the menu, I noticed "Discontinued" hastily plastered on the seafood portion of the menu.... "Uh-oh," I muttered to myself...  When it was my turn to order, the staff member at the register confirmed it for me, all fish/seafood items have been discontinued, to include their fish sandwich... So off to Chick-fil-A, an impromptu plan B, I went....

I didn't put Chick-fil-A on my original list of fast food restaurants serving fish sandwiches because although they do have a fish sandwich on their menu, it's only available on Fridays during the season of lent.

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Who has the best fast food fish sandwich? - Day 4, Dinner - Bachelor on the Cheap

Wendy's Chicken Sandwich
Apparently this fish sandwich doesn't deserve its own wrapper...

So it's dinner time and Wendy's is the crispy fish sandwich of chance.  Here's their description:  Our premium sandwich is made using only wild-caught North Pacific Cod, hand-cut from a whole fillet so it's tender and deliciously flakey. It's then lightly coated in a crispy, panko breading and topped with a creamy, dill tartar sauce and crunchy dill pickles. 

The marketing sounds good doesn't it?  But how is the sandwich?

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Who has the best fast food fish sandwich? - Day 4, Lunch - 2 Fish Sandwiches at Hardee's for $5 - Bachelor on the Cheap

Who has the best sandwich?  The worst? 

Two sandwiches for $5
Hardee's Beer Battered Fish Sandwiches

I headed to Hardee's today for lunch.  They have a two fish sandwiches for $5 deal going on right now, it is after all the season of Lent.  The Hardee's version of a crispy fish sandwich features a beer battered cod fillet and fried until  crispy.  It's a classic preparation coming with lettuce, tartar sauce and served on a toasted sesame seed bun. 

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Who has the best fast food fish sandwich? - Day 3, Dinner - The Burger King fish sandwich sucks - Bachelor on the Cheap

Who has the best sandwich?  The worst? 

"Big Fish"
So how does Burger King's "Big Fish" sandwich stack up?

I went to Burger King for dinner in this quest for the best fast food fish sandwich.  I cannot recall to have ever sampled Burger King's version.  I regret that I did on this night.  When I took the top lid of the fish sandwich I ordered I thought I was at McDonald's for a second....  It was another square 'patty' of processed fish! Here's how the BK fish sandwich is touted on the website:  Big Fish Sandwich...  A delicious golden-crisp catch.....  Our premium Big Fish Sandwich is 100% White Alaskan Pollock, breaded with crispy panko breading and topped with sweet tartar sauce, tangy pickles, all on top of a toasted brioche-style bun.  LOL, that's funny! 

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Who has the best fast food fish sandwich? - Day 3, Lunch - Bachelor on the Cheap

Who has the best sandwich?  The worst? 

20180327_184847So I had Freddy's Frozen Custard & Steakburgers and their version of a crispy fried fish sandwich for lunch and it was quite good!  Advertised as two fillets of premium wild-caught Alaska cod, those fillets are topped with a slice of American cheese and the toasted bun is dressed with the classic Freddy's sauce which is mayonnaise, ketchup, pickle juice and Freddy's seasoning...  The sauce is basically a ramped up version of Thousand Island dressing with a better finish and coupled with that slice of cheese is a nice change of pace from a classic tartar.

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Who has the best fast food fish sandwich? - Day 2 - Bachelor on the Cheap

Who has the best sandwich?  The worst? 

20180327_133904For dinner this day, as a matter of convenience (I live two buildings down from a McDonald's) and in the name of food science, I had the McDonald's Filet-O-Fish.  Going into this challenge I predicted this would be on the bottom rung of the fish sandwich ladder.  I've sampled this sandwich before (yester-year) and I knew going in this would be a less-than-steller sandwich but to be fair in comparison the sandwich must be sampled again for this challenge.

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