Food & Drink

What goes on a reuben sandwich

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reuben sandwich
The quintessential Reuben sandwich
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Ever wonder what goes on a reuben sandwich for a true deli-style treat?

What do you get when you combine perfectly grilled rye bread stuffed with layers of savory corned beef; thick and creamy Russian dressing; tangy sauerkraut; and melted Swiss cheese? A classic Reuben Sandwich at its finest is your reward.

The Reuben's history is a little shady, like every other food item. No one can agree to where it started and by whom. Here is the most believable and documented start of this delicious sandwich, which is a good place to start if you are wondering what goes on a Reuben sandwich!

The following is an excerpt from an interview in 1938 given by Arnold Reuben, believed to be the creator of the Reuben sandwich. Obtained from American Life Histories: Manuscripts from the Federal Writers' Project, 1936-1940, Reuben and his Restaurant, December 18,1938. Excerpt from the interview:

"I'll tell you about how I got the sandwich idea. I owned a delicatessen on Broadway and one day a dame walks in, one of the theatrical dames, and she's down and out I suppose, and she asks me for something to eat. Her name was Anna Selos. Well, I'm feeling sort of good, so I figure I'll clown around for the dame. That's how it all came about. I'm clowning for the dame. Well, what do I do? I take a holy bread that I used to keep and grab up the knife and, you know, clowning like, I cut it right through on the bias. Then I take some roast beef, I don't remember exactly what. But, anyway, I figure I'll put anything on. So I take some meat and cheese and I slap it on, and I put on some spice and stuff and I make her up a sandwich; it was a foot high. Well the dame just eats it, that's all. She must have been plenty hungry. And when she gets through she says, "Mr. Reuben, that's the best sandwich I ever tasted in my life." Well, the idea comes to me in a flash. I'll call it the Anna Selos sandwich, after the dame. Then, one night, she brings some friends up, you know, stage people and a newspaper man, and this guy he goes right behind the counter and makes himself up a sandwich, and then he tells me why I don't call the sandwich after celebrities? Like what happened with Anna Selos. Why don't I call it the Anna Selos sandwich? Well, boys, in a flash, I get the idea. Anna Selos! I'll call it a Reuben Special."


Classic Reuben Sandwiches

16 slices rye bread

3/4 cup Russian Dressing

1 pound thinly sliced corned beef

2 cups sauerkraut

1 pound Swiss cheese, sliced

1/3 cup softened butter

Spread the insides of the bread with the dressing, to taste. Distribute the corned beef, top with sauerkraut and finish with the Swiss cheese. Place on Panini-grill or stove-top to get the cheese melted and heavenly.

Russian Dressing Recipe

1 cup mayonnaise

2 tablespoons ketchup

1 tablespoon minced onion

1 teaspoon horseradish

teaspoon Worcestershire sauce

2 tablespoons minced parsley

Mix all together.

Make this sandwich for a friendly get-together or as an easy dinner for the family.


Great Party Recipes: Reuben Sandwich

What's Cooking America: Reuben History

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