A Tale of Two Slices

The Prose and Condiments of the American Sandwich


This is the story of the American sandwich,  the biography of an American hero (or hoagie, if you prefer), from its first appearance in early American food culture to its rise to fame on modern-day menus and in today’s home kitchens.  The sandwich’s life story is by no means a simple one, imbrued as it is with the ever-onward marches of technology, taste, and time. 

It is a tale best told through reconstruction, piece-by-piece, from bread to spread to filling to garnish. Each component unfolds into its own  timeline, narrated by facts both scientific and sociological, punctuated by culinary tall tales and folk lore. 

This is also the story of the quest to track the American sandwich through history–in the libraries, kitchens, and stomachs of America past and present: a chance to capture a rich, sprawling history. And to eat a lot of sandwiches.


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