Tuesday, May 5, 2009

National Hoagie Day

Today is National Hoagie day. As a native Philadelphian, I'm happy and proud. I'm also kind of disappointed that I won't be home to celebrate properly. Here in Charlotte, it is extremely hard to find true Philly fare. There are a few restaurants that make good cheesesteaks, but even less when it comes to authentic hoagies. Subs are king here.

For those of you who do not hail from Delaware valley, hoagies and subs are to very different things. Subs are sandwiches on long rolls. You can put just about anything on a sub. Hoagies are different because the require very specific criteria. The roll must be long and white (not wheat or anything else). You slice the roll length wise, open it up and prop it up on its side, like a taco. Most folks start with mayo. I start mine dry. Some people use mustard or oil. Next comes the cheese, American or provolone. After the cheese comes the lunch meat. The specific kind of lunch meat used on a hoagie is dependant upon the kind of hoagie ordered. There's American, Italian, ham, turkey, etc.. The exceptions are tuna, cheese, and cheesesteak hoagies. Nonetheless, there should be almost a pound of meat, at least. Then comes the shredded lettuce, tomatoes and onions. This is very important: no lettuce, no hoagie. Lastly, you can add salt, pepper, oregano and/or oil.

Another important distinction between hoagies and subs is how they are ordered. When getting a sub, you have to tell them what to put on it. When ordering a hoagie, you have to tell them what you don't want. Also because hoagies are open faced, they are eaten sort of like the way one would eat a taco.

I could go on and on but then this would no longer be a post but a book. I will leave that up to the hoagie experts.

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