IT’S A dark day indeed when we need reminding of the pleasures of a great sandwich.

Aren’t we a nation of sandwich fanatics?

Prawn mayo, cheese and pickle, ham salad, BLT... these, surely, are lunchbox staples for any age.

Well, not anymore. The good old sandwich is sadly under threat.

With the rising popularity of low-carb diets, Brits are ditching the dough for alternatives such as lettuce beetroot wraps and sushi, which means sandwiches are losing market share.

Something must be done about this. We need an intervention. The sandwich is a national treasure, it’s part of our collective identity, along with builders’ tea and Sunday night’s Antiques Roadshow!

I’m sure my love of sandwiches comes in a large part from my great passion for bread-baking, and bread is always present on my table.

There’s something special about bread, from test-your-teeth crunchy trending sourdoughs to those deliciously floppy slices of cheap basic building blocks.

Making a sandwich for me is to explore different textures and flavours; to balance sweet, salty, sour and rich until you find the perfect combination.

I take what my wife would call obsessive care in ordering the layers of fillings, such as lettuce, to form a barrier between bread and tomato to avoid juice-sogginess.

One must always respect bread.

Sandwiches were probably born out of convenience, and would have been eaten for thousands of years before anyone ever thought to tell the story of the good old Earl of Sandwich munching one at this gambling table.

His reputed reluctance to get up and leave his game meant his staff bought him sliced roast beef between bread.

Convenient and reliable, with no greasy fingers too.

It doesn’t have to mean boring, however. For me, this is a huge part of the problem sadly.

We see sandwiches as a cop-out, something to fall back on when we can’t be bothered to make anything ‘proper’.

A little extra care is needed, and things in bread can make the finest lunch, or even dinner.

Just think of livening up your sandwiches as like having a haircut or offering to do the washing up; small changes can make a big difference and breathe new life into your lunchbox and save you a bob or two!