#foodFriday – History in Sandwiches

| March 6, 2015

Many food historians attribute the modern sandwich to the 18th-century Earl of Sandwich, but the idea of wrapping filling in some kind of bread definitely extends much farther back into history. The wrap sandwich, for example, was first documented by Hillel the Elder, who wrapped lamb and herbs in soft matzah during Passover.

Mrs. Rorer suggests three types of bread, and intimates that she prefers her sandwiches dusted with salt and “a suspicion of paprica.” Though many of the sandwiches in this book seem familiar to us in name (okay, probably not cream of chicken), a closer look at the text shows that most of them are made up of a salad or spread-like filling. The cold beef sandwich, for example, isn’t anything like a cold cut sub; the filling uses finely-chopped leftover roast beef mixed with ketchup, Worcestershire sauce, and melted butter to form a thick spread.  While this sounds like an inventive use for leftovers, I’m inclined to stick with Hillel—though I’ll take my wrap with falafel and tzatziki sauce instead of the lamb. What’s your favorite sandwich?