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Mama Guarnaschelli's Double Decker Sandwich

Alex Guarnaschelli's Mama Guarnaschelli's Double Decker Sandwich.TODAY, December 1, 2016.
Alex Guarnaschelli's Mama Guarnaschelli's Double Decker Sandwich. TODAY, December 1, 2016.Nathan R. Congleton / TODAY

Chef notes

I have such a vivid memory of my mother assembling this sandwich. It's completely make-ahead and assemble just before eating. The sandwich offers so much flavor and texture: The chips, the egg salad, the tuna salad. It's like a very smart assembly of classic items that come together brilliantly. It's great for a group and can even be made in miniature versions for a small bite. Most of all: it's the story. It's that private way we all make food for ourselves... A sandwich is so personal. This is my mom's sandwich story I'm sharing with you.

There's irony in having such a great and decadent sandwich made for you as a kid when you grow up literally across the street from the iconic Carnegie deli in New York City. And it's a whole lotta sandwich and bread. But it's also a stunning mix of tastes, textures and peppery notes.  It also could often be made from my mom's pantry without a trip to the store.  She was always trying to sell me hard boiled eggs or canned tuna anyway. I made it again recently and realized I forgot how good it is.


  • 8 large eggs, hard boiled, peeled and chopped
  • 6 tablespoons mayonnaise
  • 1/2 teaspoon Spanish paprika
  • Kosher salt
  • 12 ounces albacore tuna
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 large lemon
  • 2 scallions, green parts only, thinly sliced
  • 6 slices seeded rye bread
  • 1 small bag kettle-cooked BBQ potato chips


Make the egg salad: In a medium bowl, combine the eggs with half of the mayonnaise, the paprika and a generous pinch salt. Stir to combine. Taste for seasoning. Set aside.

Make the tuna salad: in another medium bowl, combine the tuna with the remaining mayonnaise, a generous pinch salt, black pepper and the juice from the lemon. Stir to blend. Taste.

Assemble the sandwiches: Lay two slices of the bread on a flat surface and top each with half of the egg salad.  Sprinkle with the scallions. Place another slice of bread on top of each and top with half of the tuna salad. Top each with half of the potato chips and the remaining slice of bread.  Press down gently to have it all come together.  Devour.