Posted on September 14, 2015
What do you call a sandwich make with a long roll of bread? A submarine sandwich? A sub? A hero sandwich? A grinder? A hoagie?
Some people call these sorts of sandwiches wedges, spuckies, po'boys, garibaldis, blimpies, zeppelins, bombers, Dagwoods, or baguettes (the long bread roll is also called a baguette, of course).
Whatever you call them, they are popular and varied – with all sorts of meats, cheeses, veggies, and toppings filling long rolls of many different sorts of bread.
Today we look at the term hoagie. This is Philadelphia's home-grown term for a large sandwich made with Italian bread. Nobody is quite sure where the name came from. Some speculate that hoagies was a variation of hoggies – the nickname given to dockworkers at the Navy Yard, which was located on what was then called Hog Island. However, the Hog Island Navy Yard shut down in the 1920s, and hoagies became popular a couple of decades after that, so others speculate that a jazz musician who who became a sandwich shop owner named the long sandwiches hoggies as a joke: you had to be a hog to eat such a big sandwich.
Either way, you'll notice that hoggies mysteriously became hoagies – quite possibly because people in other cities, when dealing with writing down what they had only heard said in a Philly accent, before, ended up changing the spelling.
I don't need to say a single word about how to celebrate Eat a Hoagie Day, do I?
But I will link to a website that says it will tell us “How to make a classic Italian hoagie – the right way.”
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