Tag Archives: dagwood

American Sandwich Series: Sandwiches Oddities of America (Savory Division)

“What’s that?  This is the last one?  The no more sandwich articles?  FREEDOM!  FREEDOM!”

~AFFotD’s Recently Over-Taxed Research Department

the last sandwich

Several weeks ago we embarked on a dangerous mission—to write about every kind of American sandwich that we hadn’t previously covered in our four-part Submarine Sandwiches of America series from over a year ago.  Some thought it couldn’t be done.  Some resigned in outrage.  The rest of us got drunk and decided, “Fuck it, we’ll probably miss a few sandwiches, but whatever” and got to writing.  Since then we’ve talked about American classics, regional favorites, and way more open faced sandwiches than we expected to have to cover when we shruggingly decided to count random piles of shit on a single piece of bread as a sandwich.  But we’ve finally come to an end to our journey, and we’re going to take things out the only way we know how.

By telling you about extremely strange sandwiches that have been created by America’s culinary know-how and disregard for convention.  Well, not like last time when we talked about sweet ones.  This here’s the savory division, y’all.

American Sandwich Series:  Sandwiches Oddities of America (Savory Division)

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The American History Of The Reuben Sandwich

“There’s no reason why this should be as good as it is…well, no, you’re right, corned beef.  Right, that, that helps a lot.”

~Reuben Scientists  (shut up, they exist)

 reuben sandwich

When we undertook the foolhardy-in-retrospect project of listing every regional submarine-style sandwich in America, we were greeted by a lot of feedback.  Mainly, “What about the sandwiches that aren’t shaped like dicks?  What about those sandwiches.”  Of course, if we had expanded our criteria to include all sandwiches in America, we’d all be dead, having emotionally snapped and rented a bus to drive our whole staff into the ocean somewhere between writing up the dagwood sandwich and the Limburger sandwich.  Our families wouldn’t have even shown up at the funerals, so worried that the corpses would spring back to life to tell them to spend twenty minutes complaining that the Jibarito isn’t nearly well-known enough to warrant its own Wikipedia page.  Ultimately, the decision to limit the sandwiches in our regional sandwiches articles was the right one, both for the marriages of our staff as well as for our rapidly depleted alcohol supply, but it did leave us feeling a little hollow.  What was the point in tearing out our hair to scrap together a few sentences on how people who call sandwiches “sarneys” are terrible people who should pay for what they have done, if we don’t get to reward ourselves by looking at pictures of delicious non-elongated sandwiches.  Sandwiches that we love, that we crave, that make our lives better.

Sandwiches like the Reuben.

The Reuben is either your favorite sandwich, or the sandwich you always forget about until you see someone order a Reuben and say, “Goddamn, it’s been a while since I’ve had a Reuben, I’ll take one too, now that you mention it.”  Everyone appreciates it, even though most of us probably think that the Reuben has foreign, possibly European, origins.  It’s not an unfair assumption.  After all, this is a toasted rye bread sandwich that’s filled with ingredients that are considered Jewish or Irish (corned beef), Swiss (cheese), Russian (dressing), or German (sauerkraut).  Of course, the very multicultural aspect of the Reuben itself should be a clear indicator that it has American origins, though the simple fact that it’s delicious and savory and way more unhealthy than even your worst assumptions (yes, yes, all the saturated fats, all of them into the churning maw) should be enough of a clue as far as its Americanness goes.  And we’re going to let you in on the American history of this cultural hodgepodge of cured meat, fermented cabbage, and mayonnaise haphazardly mixed with ketchup.  Not because the Reuben is the sandwich you need, but because it’s the sandwich you deserve.

The American History Of The Reuben Sandwich

 reuben

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The Regional Italian and Submarine Sandwiches of America: Midwest and West Coast

“We just wanted to write about sub sandwiches.  That’s safe, right?  Delicious, universally loved sub sandwiches.  Then the madness came.  Then the darkness fell.  Then came the Sarney.”

~Found Footage From the Ruins of the Building That Once Housed AFFotD’s Main Office

iitalian sammich

When we started this journey, we were happy.  We were unified.  We were just sitting around the writer’s table, adding whiskey to our coffee (office culture dictates that you can’t drink hard unmixed hard alcohol until at least eleven in the morning), laughing, loving.  Living.  Then, in walked Johnny Roosevelt, our Editor-in-Chief and winner of 2013’s “drunkest at our Christmas party” award.

“Ladies.  Gentlemen.  Ghosts of the cool Presidents that would have been considered alcoholics in today’s society.  We haven’t really talked about sandwiches much, have we?”

And hell followed.

It seemed simple enough.  We would just write about all the sandwiches we could think of that are served in long rolls.  Basically, variation of submarine and Italian sandwiches, a cornerstone of our culture.  We started with the East Coast to cover subs and Italians, and followed it up with Pennsylvania sandwiches so we could write about hoagies and cheesesteaks.  We didn’t need to get into dagwood territory, because writing about various sliced bread sandwiches would easily creep into the mundane, and also fuck Dagwood Bumstead.

Then the voices came.

“Tunnels.  Bombers.  Torpedoes.  Barb fucking Mills.  Try as you might, you will not find them.  They only exist in name to haunt you.  Your charge is futile.  Your destiny is pointless.”

Anyway, here are some motherfucking sandwiches from the motherfucking Midwest and West Coast and we guarantee we’ll come across another non-existent sandwich and we will lose our motherfucking minds.

The Regional Italian and Submarine Sandwiches of America: Midwest and West Coast

regional sandwich

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