Why Is Wildly Popular Maine Version Italian Sandwich So Different Than Any Other?
National Sandwich Day is November 3!
You have to love that it falls on a Friday this year. Who doesn’t like to pick up a sub for lunch or dinner? We love our sub shops in New England, there’s one in every town and more often than not, a lot more than one. Subs are the perfect meal choice for on the go eating or bringing them home to enjoy. In Massachusetts Italian sandwiches are very popular and certainly one of the most ordered sub variety.
For us here in Mass we think an Italian sub should have certain meats and cheeses and the correct add-ons of veggies and oil and vineger. The typical ingredients include the following, a fresh sub roll,romaine lettuce, juicy tomatoes, red onion, provolone cheese, prosciutto, capicola, genoa salami, soprassata salami, red wine vinegar, dried oregano, olive oil, and hot cherry peppers or as we call them (hots).
The Classic Maine Italian Sub
Maine, the traditional Italian sandwich is prepared using a long bread roll or bun with meats such as ham along with American or provolone cheese, tomato, onion, green bell pepper, Greek olives, olive oil or salad oil, salt and cracked black pepper. Ham is the default meat unless another is specified, so ordering a “Ham Italian” is considered redundant.The sandwich is often cut in half to make it easier to handle
Where does it come from?
Giovanni Amato, a grocer in Portland, Maine claims to have invented the “Italian sandwich”. While selling his bread on his street cart, Amato received requests from dockworkers to slice his long bread rolls and add sliced meat, cheese and vegetables to them. Amato later opened a sandwich shop named Amato’s, and today the sandwich continues to be prepared by Amato’s sandwich shops.
Growing up in Maine myself, I can assure you that this is a sandwich that would be worth your trip. The next time you’re in the great state of Maine, stop by Amato‘s, and pick up an Italian sandwich. Ask for a double, you get more meat and cheese! You won’t be disappointed.