They say gambling never pays, but when John Montagu, 4th Earl of Sandwich around 1762 asked for food to be brought to him during an epic gaming session and his inventive chef rustled up slices of meat between bread, the jackpot was hit for lunches across the land for centuries to come.

I read recently that we buy more than 3,500,000,000 sandwiches a year and that of course doesn’t take into account the myriad lunch boxes made up, late night supper sandwiches, breakfast butties, picnics and quick snacks that are rustled up at home.

British Sandwich week has become an annual thing and this year it was May 20-26. There are awards, there are new designs - no more are we content as a nation to just slap a bit of cheese and pickle between two slices of sliced white and chow down. We demand artisan bread, exotic fillings, something to tingle and tantalise the taste buds such that the humble sandwich is so often anything but.

In Waterloo Tea this week, one sandwich took me to Vietnam in the form of an aubergine banh mi with zingy pickled vegetables and a tofu aioli. At my little Royal Wedding ‘do’ recently, Jane whipped up a plate of delicious smoked salmon sandwiches on the fluffiest bread with a squeeze of lemon and crunch of black pepper. My taste buds were right there in St George’s Chapel. I have waxed lyrical in this column about my deep love for a fish finger sandwich, with crispy lettuce and cool mayonnaise – that mix of crunch, cold, creamy a veritable butterfly disco on the tongue.

My daughter would live on sandwiches. Trips to America have imbued her with a deep love for ‘peanut butter and jelly’ which makes me feel vaguely 'eurgh', but peanut butter is good for her and it is a brilliant first foodstuff for getting children interested in making themselves something to nourish them and sets them on a road to looking after themselves. She is yet to perfect clearing the kitchen surface of crumbs, washing up or taking her plate anywhere near the sink when she’s finished eating, but she will make food and to that end, I rejoice.

I wondered if we would start to fall out of love with sandwiches as we become more interested in low-carb and gluten-free and there are countless competitors for our affections when it comes to snacks and savouries, but the boundless adaptability of a sandwich seems to mean we keep returning. It is portable, it can be healthy, packed with flavour, it can even be sociable evidenced by the popularity of any Subway cafe, the one in Penarth being a favourite with my children and to my mind a better option than some of the take-away choices that they could request.

So sandwich, I salute you and your adaptable, tasty glory, long may you reign and now lunch time beckons and I think I shall rustle one up and munch it with gusto.