Chef Chris ‘Gerber’ Mathie offers customers Club Sandwiches with a crabby twist

Food • September 2015

The Club Sandwich

Chris ‘Gerber’ Mathie is Production Chef at The Little Nell, Aspen. Here he shares his refreshing take on the traditional Club Sandwich, perfect for devouring before hitting the slopes

The Club Sandwich is a staple on the menu at The Little Nell. We use applewood-smoked bacon, plus ham and turkey galantine from Fra’mani [the food company owned by San Francisco-based chef Paul Bertolli].

The important thing is to fold the slices of meat before you place them on the bread. It’s better than just laying it down flat, as I find the air space gives the sandwich a better texture.

My twist on the classic would be a Crab Club with crispy crab cakes, smoked salmon and crispy pork belly, lemon caper aioli, tomato, lettuce and fresh rocket served on buttery brioche bread.

Ingredients (makes one sandwich)

For the sandwich

45g fresh salmon (see curing recipe below) 

2 x 75g crab cakes (see recipe below)

3 pieces of sliced brioche

15g lemon aioli (see recipe below)

45g pork belly

90g rocket leaves

3 slices tomato

1 thin slice red onion

For the smoked salmon cure

21g kosher salt

7g bay leaf

2g brown sugar

105g paprika

90g coriander, ground

85g white pepper

15g cinnamon, ground

15g fennel, ground

15g cloves, ground

For the crab cakes

450g crab meat

50g unsalted butter

3 large eggs

70g grapeseed oil

20g garlic, peeled

100g shallots, peeled

10g parsley, chopped

15g chives, chopped

40g panko breadcrumbs

For the lemon aioli

110g mayonnaise

14g lemon juice

1 tbsp lemon zest

1 tbsp capers

1 tbsp tarragon, chopped

1 tbsp chives, chopped

1 tbsp chervil, chopped


Chris’ Club Sandwich twist combines pork belly with salmon and crab


1. To make the smoked salmon cure, combine all ingredients and coat the salmon on both sides thoroughly. Leave in a cool, dry place for two days.

2. After two days, smoke in a smoker for 90 minutes. Slice thinly.

3. To make the crab cakes, combine all the ingredients and mix well.

4. Form each crab cake into a patty (approximately 75g in weight). Coat the outside of each cake with panko breadcrumbs, then leave to one side.

5. To make the lemon aioli, combine all the ingredients thoroughly in a bowl.

6. To make the sandwich, begin by searing the crab cakes until crispy.

7. Sear the pork belly until crispy.

8. Toast the brioche slices.

9. Assemble the sandwich: spread aioli on the bread, toss the arugula in olive oil and lemon juice, and season.

10. Place the rest of the ingredients evenly on the sandwich in between the three pieces of brioche.

This article has been tagged Food + Drink, Destination