The Story of the Sandwich – Where Did it Come From. Do People Eat Them All Over the World?
1st Century B.C.
The first recorded sandwich was made in the 1st century B.C. by the famous rabbi, Hillel the Elder. The sandwich was made at the Jewish holiday Passover and included a mixture of chopped nuts, spices, apples, and wine between two matzohs to eat with bitter herbs. The nickname for this sandwich, according to sum is the Hillel Sandwich.
6th to 16th Century
This time is referred to as the Middle Ages and in terms of sandwiches; thick blocks of coarse stale bread called trenchers were used instead of plates. Meats and other food were piled on top of the bread to be eaten sometimes with the aid of knives. The trenchers conveniently absorbed the juice, grease and the sauces.
The First Written Record of the Word Sandwich
The first written record of the word sandwich was written on November 24, 1762 and appeared in Edward Gibbons’s journal. Gibbons was an English author, historian and scholar. He said “I dined at the Cocoa Tree…That respectable body affords every evening a sight truly English. Twenty or thirty of the first men in the kingdom…supping at little tables…upon a bit of cold meat, or a Sandwich.”
Another Possibility for the Invention of the Sandwich
Some have speculated that the cooks at London’s Beef Steak Club invented the first sandwich in 1762 at Shakespeare Tavern. John Montague was credited with this and was referred to as the Fourth Earl of the Sandwich. He eventually became the first lord of the Admiralty in England.
Sandwich Introduced to America
Englishwoman Elizabeth Leslie in her cookbook, Directions for Cookery, introduced the sandwich to America in 1840. The book had a recipe for ham sandwiches that she suggested as a main dish. The sandwich became highly popular in the American diet when bakeries began to use pre-sliced bread. This made sandwiches easy to make and a great portable meal for workers and school children alike. Today sandwiches are eaten all around the world.
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Tags: Hillel, Passover, Sandwich, Sandwich facts, sandwich guide, sandwich history, sandwich recipes, Elizabeth Leslie, London’s Beef Steak Club
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