Sandwich à la Khan’s Bargain Ltd.


Khan's Bargain Ltd. Sandwich

Many of you will know about my love for Khan’s Bargain Ltd. It’s one of the best shops in Peckham; so good in fact that I felt moved to write a whole post about it. Recently, a reader left a comment on that post saying that Mr. Khan has sadly passed away. I went down myself to verify this and sure enough, there was a sign behind the counter. The man who gave his name to such an endearingly chaotic shop is no longer with us.

I considered ways to pay tribute to Mr. K and his Emporium of Random and it seemed fitting to create a sandwich à la Khan’s because there have been oh so many over the past few years. I’ve stuffed them with various bits of cheese or vegetables depending on my mood; creamy labneh with slender crisp slices of baby cucumber perhaps, a slick of muhammara or a dollop of baba ganoush. Always a big handful of fresh herbs.

The sesame speckled flat breads they sell are incredible, so soft and moist. I split one and layered it with aleppo pepper paste (a spicy blend made almost entirely from aleppo pepper and chillies), silky fried aubergine slices, pan scorched halloumi and plenty of coriander. It was a cracking sandwich; base chilli heat, juicy aubergines and salty cheese is a winning combo. Some of the best Khan’s ingredients all together. I didn’t know Mr. Khan personally, but I know his shop inside out; it’s one of the reasons I fell head over heels for Peckham 5 years ago and it’s one of the reasons I continue to relish shopping here. Rest in peace, Mr. Khan, your customers remain loyal and your shop, the most charming ramshackle arrangement of groceries, home wares and plastic animals on Rye Lane.

Sandwich à la Khan’s Bargain Ltd. (makes 2)

2 round soft flat breads
Aleppo paste (if you can’t get this, use another spicy paste, such as harissa or make a paste with red peppers, chilli and oil)
1 packet halloumi cheese
1 large aubergine, sliced into 2cm sliced
Very finely sliced red onion
Plain flour
Oil, for frying
A handful of fresh coriander leaves

Heat some oil to a depth of about 1cm in a heavy based frying pan. Spread some flour out on a plate and dust each aubergine slice in it, then drop into the hot oil. You will need to do this in batches so as not to crowd the pan. Keep the cooked aubergine slices on a plate covered with kitchen paper in a low oven while you finish cooking the rest. When all the aubergines are cooked, keep them all in the oven while you fry the halloumi.

To fry the halloumi, slice it thickly then drop into a dry pan until golden on both sides.

Warm the flatbreads briefly, then split them in half and spread with pepper paste. Layer on the halloumi, aubergines, onion and fresh coriander. Serve immediately.

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    Reply Kavey March 27, 2012 at 10:53 am

    What a lovely post to remember him by. And a lovely sandwich too.
    Hope the shop is taken on by family members, and is able to remain in business going forward.

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      Reply Helen March 27, 2012 at 10:55 am

      Thanks! Yes there seems to be a large team that are always in there so I’m sure the shop will be just fine.

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    Reply Craftilicious March 27, 2012 at 11:26 am

    What a fitting memorial – those flat breads look gorgeous.
    Tara x

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      Reply Helen March 27, 2012 at 11:48 am

      The flat breads are proper addictive. Be warned!

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    Reply zuko March 27, 2012 at 12:27 pm

    Oh hello, I think there’s a bit of halloumi at the back of the fridge who’s fate has just been sealed.

    PS I made your beef goulash for the mother-in-law at the weekend, serious brownie points 🙂

    PPS …and I had that sizzling prawn dish from AOL for on Saturday too, brilliant to enjoy in the garden with a cheeky lunchtime beer.

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      Reply Helen March 27, 2012 at 1:13 pm

      Ha! Fantastic! So pleased the recipes are going down well, particularly the one for the mother-in-law…

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    Reply Lizzie March 27, 2012 at 12:37 pm

    Lovely tribute to Mr Khan. That sandwich looks amazing – you had me at aubergine.

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      Reply Helen March 27, 2012 at 1:13 pm

      Do you like aubergine? Really? Tee hee.

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    Reply Robert March 27, 2012 at 1:51 pm

    RIP Mr Khan – Ah I think it’s sweet dedicating a sandwich in tribute… I shall revisit your old posts and go to Peckham ASAP. I liked Persepolis for starters.

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      Reply Helen March 27, 2012 at 1:53 pm

      Yes get yourself down to Peckham!

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    Reply Chris March 27, 2012 at 5:15 pm

    RIP Mr Khan. Safe travels to the great, vast, sprawling random shop in the sky.

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      Reply Helen March 27, 2012 at 6:46 pm

      Heaven indeed.

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    Reply Laura@howtocookgoodfood March 27, 2012 at 7:54 pm

    Sounds like Mr.Khan will be missed. What a brilliant sandwich you have created, I bet his family would be proud! x

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      Reply Helen March 27, 2012 at 7:58 pm

      I dunno about that but it was certainly tasty!

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    Reply Margaret March 29, 2012 at 3:33 pm

    What a brilliant, moving article. I am sure Mr Khan is smiling to himself and that his family, friends and staff who see this article will be moved too. Not a great aubergine fan myself but I know I would enjoy the rest of the sandwich!

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      Reply Helen March 29, 2012 at 3:39 pm

      Thanks Margaret!!

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    Reply Gin and Crumpets March 29, 2012 at 8:38 pm

    That’s sad news that Mr Khan has died. feel certain his emporium has now taken on a life of its own and will memorialise him and his magpie tastes in goods. Sandwich sounds excellent – love those giant flat breads they sell. never tried the Aleppo sauce and definitely need to get my hands on some next time I’m there.

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      Reply Helen March 30, 2012 at 6:33 am

      It’s fab. They don’t always have it though so worth grabbing a couple of pots if you see them.

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    Reply Leigh April 1, 2012 at 5:54 pm

    They do look wonderful; as it happens, I’m craving flavours like this at the moment; maybe it’s the hint of sun we’ve been enjoying. I love making flats and this just gives me more inspiration. Thanks!

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    Reply Ailsa April 2, 2012 at 12:58 pm

    I don’t know why I’ve not thought to combine aubergine and halloumi in a sandwich before. Brilliant.

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    Reply miss south April 4, 2012 at 8:22 pm

    I love Khan’s so much. And this might be the sandwich to sway me to aubergine that hasn’t been blended with other stuff. I’m not wild on the texture generally…

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      Reply Helen April 5, 2012 at 9:31 am

      Yes, perhaps! There’s a crunch (obviously, what with them being fried) so give it a go.

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    Reply Food Urchin April 5, 2012 at 4:06 pm

    After reading the first Khan post and this one, I now feel quite sad about Mr Khan.

    But still, what a fitting sandwich to honour the memory of Mr Khan.

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    Reply Becci April 5, 2012 at 6:41 pm

    Aubergine, tick. Halloumi, tick. Flatbread, tick. Coriander, tick. That is one ticketyboom sandwich. RIP Mr Khan.

    • Avatar
      Reply Helen April 6, 2012 at 2:04 pm


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    Reply French'Licious May 20, 2012 at 3:16 pm

    I’ve never heard about Mr Khan, but this sadwich seems delicious. I will test it. RIP Mr Khan.

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    Reply Libby May 21, 2012 at 4:14 pm

    RIP Mr Khan 🙁 Sounds like a lovely and delicious way to remember him.

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    Reply Lesley September 26, 2012 at 12:02 pm

    Aleppo pepper paste! Is this available in Khans? If so I need to brave the 37 bus and get me to Peckham asap.

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      Reply Helen September 26, 2012 at 12:03 pm

      I have bought it in Khan’s before and you can definitely buy something similar there if they don’t have that exact pepper paste.

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