Citizens, a great sandwich is truly a thing of wonderment, and your beloved and glorious leader is especially fond of the so-called “Italian sandwich”. This remains perhaps my favorite type of sandwich delight, which has truly reached its apotheosis in my 18-layer Dagwood-worthy hero! 😀
That said, there are certain regional variants of this classic sandwich that re-define the norm – perhaps nowhere more so than the great state of Maine!
As noted on http://highlandgreenlifestyle.com:
Many regions around the country, especially on the East Coast, have a variation of a sandwich on a long French or Italian style roll, filled with various cold cuts and vegetables. A Submarine sandwich can be found in areas of Connecticut, Delaware, New Jersey, New York, and Massachusetts. A Hoagie is from the Delaware Valley, Philadelphia, South Jersey, Baltimore, and Maryland. Parts of New York and Northern New Jersey are home to the Hero. A grinder can be found in much of New England outside of Maine and Boston. Wedges, Spuckies, Po’Boys, Zeppelins, Torpedoes, Garibaldis, Blimpies, Dagwoods, and Cubans are some other regional variations.
A Maine Italian sandwich is a completely unique experience. The origin of “Italians,” has less to do with ingredients than with the nationality of the inventor and his original customers.
It is widely believed that Giovanni Amato, who owned a small bakery in Portland’s waterfront, began splitting his bread loaves and piling them with meat, cheese and vegetables to sell to local dock workers around 1902. Indeed the general area around the traditionally Italian India Street section of Portland is the historic cradle of original “Italians.”
A standard Maine Italian Sandwich is a long soft white roll split in the middle and filled with boiled Danish ham, American cheese, white onions, green peppers, cured black olives, tomatoes, and sour pickles. Salt and Pepper are sprinkled on top followed by a blend of canola and olive oil. The delicious combination balances savory, salty, sour, sweet, soft, and crunchy.
I have made a few minor tweaks to the classic recipe, but for the most part this is as traditional a version of the Maine classic as you’ll ever find! 😀
Battle on – The Generalissimo