Settle the debate: is a hot dog a sandwich? What about a gyro?
Travel is all about taking a bite of another culture. With any luck that bite will be melty, gooey, cheesy, can’t-talk-now-I’m-eating-my-weight-in-deliciousness tasty, and most likely made easily portable by being wrapped in some sort of bread-like containment system.
This made us wonder: almost every culture has a beloved snack of meat wrapped in carbs. In America, we tend to describe that as a sandwich. For the sake of scientific advancement, we asked ourselves:
Do these mouthwatering meals technically count as sandwiches?
We sat down in search of an answer with our two most opinionated sandwich advocates in the office to get to the truth once and for all.
Meet the debaters:
· Matt, a sandwich purist
· Sky, a free-spirit of the kitchen
The food in question:
Icelandic Hot Dogs (Iceland):
The Land of Fire & Ice put a Viking twist on the ballpark classic: lamb meat, topped with raw & fried onions, apple ketchup, mustard, and remoulade.
Matt: It’s literally a hot dog. Hot dogs are not sandwiches, they’re hot dogs. So, no.
Sky: Sandwich. A hot dog is a sandwich because it’s meat wrapped in bread. Sooo… yes.
“Um, it’s pronounced ‘yeero’ in Greece,” –every know-it-all ever. We don’t care how it’s pronounced. We just want more of that tzatziki- and lamb-filled pita.
Matt: That is one strange taco. But it’s not a sandwich.
Sky: If you look at it straight-on, it’s the same shape as a sub. Sub is short for submarine sandwich. It’s a sandwich.
Brezel mit Salami (Switzerland):
A pretzel stuffed with salami? The only difference between this Swiss snack and a hoagie is the shape. But does shape matter?
Matt: That looks like a sandwich. It’s stacked like a sandwich. So yeah, I’ll give this one the sandwich label.
Sky: Yeah, that’s a sandwich as long as the pretzel is cut in half lengthwise, like bread.
Broodje Haring (Amsterdam):
Bear with us on this Dutch delicacy: raw herring… you still there? ...on a roll with raw onions and, if you’re lucky, pickles.
Matt: Filet o’ Fish at Mickey D’s is a sandwich. So I suppose this is technically a sandwich too.
Sky: I wish it wasn’t.
Is a bratwurst a hot dog? Nein! But we don’t blame you for mistaking a pork sausage in a crusty bun with mustard and sauerkraut for its American cousin. The Germans call this delicious, but can you call it a sandwich?
Matt: Nope. That’s just a thick hot dog.
Sky: There’s meat. There’s bread. You can put condiments on it. It’s a sandwich.
Picture this: after a day of looking for Game of Thrones landmarks in Dubrovnik, a saintly street vendor hands you a direwolf-sized bad boy of sausages, red pepper spread, cheese, and onions shoved in a flatbread. Whaddya think, sandwich deciders?
Matt: That is a sandwich because it’s horizontal. Like my grandma always said about sandwiches: bread on the bottom, bread on the top.
Sky: Yes, it’s a sandwich. Hear me out: two slices of bread were once just part of a solid loaf. Then they were sliced and stuffed. Same thing here. One flatbread was sliced and stuffed. Sandwich. Boom.
Cornish Pasty (UK):
Is Meghan Markle British now? Yes. Is this basically a steak and cheese sub if you were to toss a little cheez-wiz on it?
Matt: No, that’s a calzone.
Sky: No, that’s a pie.
Savory Crepes (France):
We ask you, if you're in Paris and Marie Antoinette says “let them eat crepes,” is she speaking sandwich?
Matt: This is some sort of pancake taco. Not a sandwich.
Sky: I am a sandwich revolutionary. This, my friends, is a sandwich. It has the same composition as a gyro, which is absolutely a sandwich.
· Sky: 7 sandwiches. 1 non-sandwich
· Matt: 3 sandwiches. 5 non-sandwiches
So there you have it. If we’ve learned anything, it’s that one woman’s sandwich is another man’s, um, “pancake taco?” Have strong opinions on the sandwich-y arts? Let us know!