03/19/2012 04:53 EDT | Updated 05/19/2012 05:12 EDT

More than 2 slices of bread and piece of ham: Chef, bakery seek best sandwich

TORONTO - Seeking sensational sandwiches! That's the message being put out across the land by a Toronto-based chef and an artisan bread company.

Chef Lynn Crawford of Food Network Canada's "Pitchin' In" fame and ACE Bakery are inspiring Canadians to get out of their rut when it comes to sandwiches and create Canada's best sandwich recipe.

“Versatility, portability and simplicity make sandwiches a summer staple,” Crawford said Monday in a release announcing the contest. “However, it can be easy to get stuck making the same sandwiches from day to day."

The artisan bakery, which opened in 1993, and Crawford are hoping to inspire Canadians "to think outside the bread box, and create innovative and original sandwich recipes that also deliver on taste,” she added.

Crawford, who also owns Ruby Watchco restaurant and the gourmet store Ruby Eats, and ACE Bakery will score the recipes based on their taste appeal, creativity, innovation and originality.

“If you're new to creating recipes, sandwiches are a great place to start — simply choose a combination of fresh ingredients that you love and start building. Also be sure to take risks. You never know what will taste great together,” says Linda Haynes, ACE Bakery co-founder and author of the bakery's cookbooks.

Canadians can submit recipes through May 24 at ACE Bakery's website. On June 4, one regional finalist from Western Canada, Ontario, Quebec and Atlantic Canada will be announced. Each regional winner will receive $1,000 cash, as well as a $1,000 donation to their charity of choice.

The regional winners will participate in the finals in Toronto on June 22, where they will prepare their recipes before an audience and panel of judges. The creator of the winning recipe will be awarded an additional $5,000 cash prize and $5,000 to donate to their charity of choice.

For more information, visit