Spam and melty cheddar sandwiches fit for a party

In this week’s Food Forum, Spam stars in a super-easy sandwich recipe from reader Patricia Rudd.

Spam. (AP Photo/Elise Amendola, File)

Spam. (AP Photo/Elise Amendola, File)

I haven’t tried Spam (yet), but last year I watched, in horror, as my friend downed it straight from the can during a backpacking trip on Vermont’s Long Trail.

Spam is a cooked pork product, so you can *technically* eat it from the can, much like you can *technically* eat a New York slice with a fork, or add raisins to your mac and cheese, or squeeze ketchup all over your popcorn (true story.)

See where I’m going with this?

Without the proper cooking technique, certain foods like Spam don’t get the love they deserve.

I don’t blame my friend. We were in the middle of the woods, tired, hungry and without a frying pan. She’s going to stick with pepperoni and tuna packets for her next thru-hiking adventure, and keep the Spam for home cooking.

Spam’s origins date back to around World War II: By 1941, more than 100 million pounds of the shelf-stable lunch meat were shipped to Allied troops, according to Hormel Foods. Spam is now a major staple of Hawaiian cuisine: During WWII, the United States government targeted the islands’ Japanese-American residents with restrictions on deep-sea fishing, according to a 2014 Eater story. Spam consequently and largely replaced fish as a necessary protein.

But I digress.

As long as it’s grilled or fried up, Spam’s possibilities are endless: fried rice, ramen, breakfast sandwiches, an onigiri-like snack of fried Spam and rice wrapped with nori called Spam musubi, and, in this week’s recipe, an open-faced sandwich platter fit for a crowd.

Reader Patricia Rudd has eaten her mother’s “Thursday Nite Sandwiches” since she and her brother were kids some 70 years ago.

Rudd’s mother made them every Thursday when her father went to his weekly dinner meeting at the Lions Club in Roseburg, Oregon.

“As far as I know she invented this recipe and only on Thursday,” Rudd wrote.

Since today is Tuesday, you have two full days to grab some Spam. You’re welcome.

As a note, Rudd doesn’t specify how much mayonnaise or yellow mustard to use, so mix in equal parts to your heart’s content.

Thursday Nite Sandwiches


Yellow mustard

1 cup Spam

1 cup cheddar cheese

6 hamburger buns (or a package of Hawaiian rolls)

Preheat oven to 350.

Mix equal parts mayonnaise and yellow mustard. Shred the Spam and the cheddar cheese with a box grater, keeping the two separate. Separate the hamburger buns and spread the mayo-mustard mixture inside each half. Top with Spam and then with cheese. Bake in the oven for 20 minutes or until cheese is melted and golden-crispy.

Talk to us

More in Food & Drink

Stop by Nutty's Junkyard, located right off the Centennial Trail in Arlington, for juicy burgers and the crispiest onion rings that food reporter Taylor Goebel has ever tried. Photo taken Thursday, June 23, 2022. (Taylor Goebel / The Herald).
Beer, doughnuts, burgers and more: Take a bite out of Centennial Trail

Bike hard and eat hard with these delicious food and drink stops along the 30-mile Centennial Trail.

Cutline: Former Fuller’s Brewery head brewer John Keeling will be speaking at Foggy Noggin Brewing in Bothell on July 31.
Summer finally begins for craft beer aficionados

Here’s the scoop on beer-related events in Everett, Marysville, Bothell and Snohomish.

Food forum
Cool down with these summertime drink recipes

Refresh yourself with two light, refreshing drink recipes.

Sweet Radish's strip combo comes with hand-breaded chicken strips, crispy waffle fries, a buttery bun, their namesake sauce, coleslaw and an additional dipping sauce (or three). Friday, June 17, 2022. (Taylor Goebel / The Herald)
Sweet Radish is Everett’s favorite new chicken shop

PSA: Eat a chicken sandwich from Sweet Radish (formerly 9 Delicacies) as soon as possible.

The Grape & Grain in Everett is now serving coffee drinks, alongside its local beer and wine offerings. (Photo courtesy of Grape & Grain)
El Mariachi to open storefront, Sol Food closes, Scuttlebutt adds deli menu

In this week’s Nuggets, we say goodbye to Sol Food and hello to a new Lynnwood brewery.

Contestant chef Brian Madayag (left) of Edmonds and West Coast team captain Brooke Williamson on “Beachside Brawl.” (Food Network) 20220616
Edmonds chef reps Pacific Northwest on new Food Network show

Barkada owner Brian Madayaga will compete on a new Food Network series that premiers Sunday.

Teresa Godfrey and Sandra Reichstetter work side by side at their new restaurant Thursday, June 9, 2022, at Cup & Crepe on Everett Mall Way in Everett, Washington. The two have been together for over 20 years. (Ryan Berry / The Herald)
New Everett biz serves up vegan and gluten-free street crêpes

From strawberry cheesecake to pizza, Cup & Crêpe has a fun take on European street-style crepes.

Food forum
The Food Forum: A southwest salad recipe fit for a crowd

Have people coming over? This tasty salad goes together in no time flat.

Hops & Seed head brewer Dru Seed (left) and owner John Bigelow share a pint at the Hops Seed taproom. (Caleb Smith)
Catch Snohomish brewery Hops & Seed at state Brewers Festival

After a two-year hiatus, the festival returns this weekend, with several Snohomish County breweries participating.

Food forum
For a quick breakfast, try this simple granola recipe

Make this granola recipe your own with your choice of dried fruits, nuts and more.

The lumpia sub at Lasa Sandwiches & Pearls is stuffed with hearty meatballs doused in sweet chili sauce, crunchy shards of egg roll wrappers, then topped with cilantro and pickled papaya, pepper and carrot. Wednesday, June 2, 2022. (Taylor Goebel / The Herald).
6 quick global bites at south Snohomish County restaurants

These eateries serve up big flavors and diverse fare in a short amount of time.

Food forum
Two meaty, flavor-packed recipes: Pork tenderloin, Ropa vieja

This week’s recipes have Cuban and Puerto Rican roots, thanks to a reader’s neighbor.