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Talk:Reuben sandwich

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 Definition Part of American food folklore, a dish made from rye bread, sauerkraut, Swiss cheese and corned beef, although pastrami can be used instead of corned beef. [d] [e]
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What happened to the photo I added?

I added an image of a Reuben sandwich which has disappeared. What happened to it?Mary Ash 16:56, 1 August 2010 (UTC)

I don't know. When I edited, I thought I only removed the template metadata, which doesn't work in the article page; it needs to be in Template: Reuben sandwich/Metadata, where I completed the questions. Howard C. Berkowitz 17:09, 1 August 2010 (UTC)
Don't understand the template stuff but I'll learn. I hopefully filled out the upload image correctly. I copied and pasted off the image page at Wikimedia. Thanks! Mary Ash 17:18, 1 August 2010 (UTC)
Ah, the classic corned beef v. pastrami debate. Have you encountered the Montreal Beef Schism, in which "smoked meat" from Bens (not Ben's) replaces pastrami? Smoked beef seems to involve both Quebec and pan-Canadian honor, although I haven't been that impressed with it. Howard C. Berkowitz 17:51, 1 August 2010 (UTC)
I bought "smoked meat" twice in Quebec City and thought it was to die for. Fantastic! I made a special trip back to, and then through, what seemed to me like the largest underground shopping mall in the world to find the shop where I'd had it the first time. Finally found it and had them make a couple of sandwiches to go.... Hayford Peirce 18:31, 1 August 2010 (UTC)


The main paragraph is copied from Recipe Wiki. Is mentioning this and the link on External Pages enough to conform to CC-BY-SA?

Instead, I prefer a rewrite. Is this a "reliable source", anyway?

--Peter Schmitt 00:31, 2 August 2010 (UTC)

I would think Recipe Wiki is a reliable source. What can you do with a recipe except post recipes. Here's a link to their licensing page, similar if not identical to Citizendium: [1] and their about page. They belong to the Wikia bunch. [2] Mary Ash 00:55, 2 August 2010 (UTC)
I was referring to it as a source for the history of the sandwich, not the recipe. Though it may also concern the "original" recipe. There are even more than two versions told. --Peter Schmitt 01:25, 2 August 2010 (UTC)
The word "reportedly" is the reporter's best friend. It covers all sins. I can add it back, if you like. Mary Ash 01:54, 2 August 2010 (UTC)
But is the covering of sins appropriate for an encyclopedia? Howard C. Berkowitz 14:42, 2 August 2010 (UTC)

Apropos definition

A mixture of dairy and meat is Jewish? Howard C. Berkowitz 01:16, 2 August 2010 (UTC)

This characterization is used by Evan Jones. He also describes a kosher variant. --Peter Schmitt 01:28, 2 August 2010 (UTC)
Yesterday night I did not pay enough attention. Even the "kosher" version uses meat and cheese ... on the other hand, the "Jewish" tradition is mentioned elsewhere, too. But because of this problem it is better not mentioned in the definition (but probably in the article). --Peter Schmitt 09:50, 2 August 2010 (UTC)
Sorry, but which Evan Jones? There are several.
See Bibliography. --Peter Schmitt 15:25, 2 August 2010 (UTC)
Now, many New York delis are not kosher. I enjoyed many a ham and cheese at Times Square delis, although that would be less likely on the Lower East Side. Nevertheless, something cannot be kosher if it combines meat and deli dairy.
It's certainly fair to say Jewish-American or Eastern European Jewish cooking, but neither equates to the provisions of religious law, kashruth, which defines the requirements of being kosher. I hope "Kosher-style" would be considered sufficiently imprecise not to be used in an encyclopedia; the kashruth inspectors are precise and have no sense of humor. Even within kosher practice, there are gradations, such as the glatt kosher observed by ultra-Orthodox. Nevertheless, the mixing of meat and dairy products at a single meal, not even in a single dish, is forbidden. Howard C. Berkowitz 14:41, 2 August 2010 (UTC)


The recipe should be moved to a Recipe template tab. As per previous CZ convention with this. If no one else does it, I'll do it after breakfast (not a Reuben sandwich....) Hayford Peirce 14:52, 2 August 2010 (UTC)

Arnold or Arthur?

Peter, my own source says Arthur: The New Food Lover's Companion, Sharon Tyler Herbst, Barron's, Hauppauge, New York, 1995, ISBN 0-8120-1520-7, page 478, but gives all of the other info that you have put in. Hayford Peirce 17:12, 2 August 2010 (UTC)

The name was a typo as I was typing a quick rewrite. The correct name was originally listed and returned to the article. I used Recipe Wiki as a source. Also, the Reuben can be made with corned beef, pastrami or ham. Either Russian (traditional) or Thousand Island dressing (more easily attainable) can be used. I've made many a reuben as I used to be a short order cook. I also know how to make Hot Roast Beef Sandwiches, Tuna Melts, and all kinds of short order things. Does that make me an expert? Probably not but I fixed a lot of sandwiches with a lot of happy customers. Mary Ash 17:51, 2 August 2010 (UTC)
When I was young, I thought tuna was native to cans. Now that I've seen them caught, I've always been impressed with the idea of the ray gun required to melt a whole tuna. Howard C. Berkowitz 17:53, 2 August 2010 (UTC)
You are too funny! I don't think I've ever eaten fresh tuna. Like you my tuna came in a can. Mary Ash 17:55, 2 August 2010 (UTC)
Look at the page at the Library of Congress (in the Bibliography). I think it can be considered as an original source. (Besides, WP and all other pages I have seen have Arnold, too.) Changing the first name was easy, but there remains more to do to make the information correct. There seems to be much recycled information around that has to be sorted out. --Peter Schmitt 17:55, 2 August 2010 (UTC)
That's fine. I'll do some more research if you like. I don't think an article about a Reuben sandwich is going to be a make or break article. Food history is often murky and hard to track down. Mary Ash 17:57, 2 August 2010 (UTC)
It was not a typo: The Recipe Wiki indeed says Arthur. And there is no doubt that such a recipe can be modified in many ways. But for an article about it the standard meaning and its history are the important issues. --Peter Schmitt 18:04, 2 August 2010 (UTC)
I did not use Wikipedia as I thought that source was not allowed here. Below are some links I found doing a quick search. Read and enjoy!
"Reportedly originally named for its creator, Arthur Reuben (owner of New York's once-famous and now-defunct Reuben's delicatessen), this sandwich is made with generous layers of corned beef, Swiss cheese and sauerkraut on sourdough rye bread. Reuben is said to have created the original version (which was reportedly made with ham) for Annette Seelos, the leading lady in a Charlie Chaplin film being shot in 1914. Another version of this famous sandwich's origin is that an Omaha wholesale grocer (Reuben Kay) invented it during a poker game in 1955. It gained national prominence when one of his poker partner's employees entered the recipe in a national sandwich contest the following year and won. The Reuben sandwich can be served either cold or grilled." Quote from Recipe Wiki: [[3]] Mary Ash 18:20, 2 August 2010 (UTC)
Typos are neither here nor there -- sources are the important thing. I've just looked at what Peter suggested (the LOC) and I am 100% convinced that Arnold is correct and that *all* the other (secondary) sources are wrong about the Arthur -- as Mary says, the sources of almost all food items are murky in the extreme. But at least let's postulate that for ONE of the stories, Arnold is correct. So I'll change it. Hayford Peirce 18:24, 2 August 2010 (UTC)

(unindent) You will notice I changed the name to ARNOLD and reflected that in the article history. Mary Ash 18:30, 2 August 2010 (UTC)

Righto, thanks! Hayford Peirce 18:33, 2 August 2010 (UTC)

Poker puzzlement

So does one ante up with potato chips or serve the sandwich with poker chips? Howard C. Berkowitz 17:36, 2 August 2010 (UTC)

I don't know but a cold beer sounds good about now. Mary Ash 17:51, 2 August 2010 (UTC)


Hayford, look here where it is explained that "grilled" is not correct. --Peter Schmitt 18:37, 2 August 2010 (UTC)

Yes, I understand that, Peter, and technically speaking he is correct. BUT every day in the United States probably 2 million people go to a diner and order a "grilled ham and cheese sandwich" or simply a "grilled cheese sandwich". Which is then "griddled". Trust me on this, we can use the word "griddled" in the article, along with "grilled", but if you went to *any* restaurant in the United States and ordered a "griddled cheese sandwich" you would either be laughed at or thrown out. Hayford Peirce 18:45, 2 August 2010 (UTC)
Wrong! Reubens are grilled all the time as I used to cook them on a grill as a short order cook. I still grill them at home using a grill pan.Mary Ash 18:47, 2 August 2010 (UTC)
Do you mean "grilled" under an overhead grill (or broiler) or "grilled" on a hot griddle, as pancakes are cooked? Grilled has different meanings -- and, for instance, it is actually generally true that *most* "barbecued" foods at home are grilled, not barbecued. I myself suppose that Reubens could be cooked either way. BUT if some recipes are specifying a grill, and some are specifying an overhead broiler, then we should make the distinction clear. Hayford Peirce 18:54, 2 August 2010 (UTC)
A grill in commercial kitchens is a large solid usually aluminum surface that is typically gas heated. Grills are not broilers, if the sandwich were to be broiled, it would have said so. Modern twists to the Reuben are grilled so they look pretty. I use a grill pan to get "grill marks" or you could use a panini press or maker. Mary Ash 19:29, 2 August 2010 (UTC)
Yes, I understand all of that perfectly. But you seemed be saying above that "griddled" is incorrect -- it is actually simply another word for "grilled" -- some purist that Peter dug up said that the use of the word "grilled" was wrong. I always thought it was "grilled", just as you say. Hayford Peirce 19:36, 2 August 2010 (UTC)

When you are tired of the sandwich go edit my Childbirth article

When you all are finished with the Reuben article the Childbirth article awaits. It's a stub and could use some expert help. Mary Ash 18:58, 2 August 2010 (UTC)

See also

Howard, why did you put in the "See also" items. We have the Related articles for this, as you know. --Peter Schmitt 00:25, 4 August 2010 (UTC)

We have the {{main}} and {{seealso}} templates. I tend to use them, in moderation, for contextualization at the top of articles. Howard C. Berkowitz 00:36, 4 August 2010 (UTC)
I think that is too much. (The recipes link to the subpage, too.) If at all, links in the second paragraph of the introduction suffice. --Peter Schmitt 00:58, 4 August 2010 (UTC)


Hayford, is it correct to say "named Anna Selos" and "named Annette Seelos" when at least one of the names is not correct? --Peter Schmitt 00:27, 4 August 2010 (UTC)

In this case, I *think* yes -- because in each case we're saying that someone *else* called them that. Obviously one, or both, of them was mistaken, though. I'll take another look at it tomorrow and see what it seems like then. Hayford Peirce 00:47, 4 August 2010 (UTC)

A new name for the sandwich

If we keep getting new accounts of its invention, we'll have to change its name to the Rashomon sandwich. Hayford Peirce 00:49, 4 August 2010 (UTC)

Now that's funny! I guess I should have started an article about making a grilled cheese sandwich.Mary Ash 00:53, 4 August 2010 (UTC)
Is there a version served in noodle shops? Howard C. Berkowitz 17:03, 6 August 2010 (UTC)


Why is a Merriam-Webster guy doing research for a Random House dictionary (I own copies of both of them) -- this would be like a Mercedes engineer doing research for Fiat.... Hayford Peirce 23:47, 5 August 2010 (UTC)

I thought that the Random House dictionary is published by Merriam-Webster? I deduced it because the author gives Merriam-Webster as his affiliation and describes his work. --Peter Schmitt 00:29, 6 August 2010 (UTC)
Random House is an enormous publisher, owned, I think by Bertlesmann, or whoever the Germans are. I thought that *maybe* Merriam-Webster had also been bought by Random House but I just looked it up and Encycl. Brit. has owned it since 1964! So god knows what this info means! Hayford Peirce 01:51, 6 August 2010 (UTC)

Developed and approval

I agree, Peter, that this is a developed article, and might indeed serve as an example of a relatively small article that can progress to Approval. As far as I know, we have no active Food Sciences editors. I could nominate as a History editor, but I'd prefer it to be a multiple-editor nomination since History is clearly the secondary field; will ask Roger and Russell.

Before Approval, it might be a good idea to clean up a few of the redlinks, such as Rye bread, Russian dressing and Thousand Island dressing. Note that I say "Thousand Island dressing" and not "Thousand Island salad dressing", since a Reuben is an existence proof that it dresses more than salads.

Any other feelings about Approval? Howard C. Berkowitz 17:02, 6 August 2010 (UTC)

Upgrading status and adding History was not meant as a call for approval -- but I certainly agree that the size of an article is not an absolute criterion. The right size depends on the purpose of the article. --Peter Schmitt 20:01, 6 August 2010 (UTC)
The right size of a Reuben is that which fits in the mouth. :-) Howard C. Berkowitz 20:06, 6 August 2010 (UTC)
It needs a better photo. In a week or so I'll go to the so-called Vito and Schlomo's New York Deli (owned by a couple of Arizona goys) not too far away from me and order a half one (even so, that's practically too much to eat) and will take some photos. Hayford Peirce 20:10, 6 August 2010 (UTC)
As far as I remember American servings never fit in a mouth. I recall a pastrami sandwich where the bread was hidden under a "mountain" of pastrami ;-) --Peter Schmitt 22:42, 6 August 2010 (UTC)
When I go to Vito and Shlomos for a *half* sandwich I always have them bring an extra piece of bread on the side. I then turn my half sandwich into one whole one that can, just barely, fit into my mouth. Hayford Peirce 22:48, 6 August 2010 (UTC)

the cheese, and another question

If the sandwich is served hot, is the cheese inside supposed to have melted nicely, the way it does in a grilled cheese/ham sandwich or croque-monsieur? With all that junk around it, I wonder if it would. Or just get *slightly* melted? I think I've only eaten one in my life, and I *think* that they microwaved it instead of grilling it. Hmmm, I wonder: should microwaving be mentioned? It wouldn't be *classic*, of course, but that doesn't mean it isn't often done.... Hayford Peirce 20:33, 6 August 2010 (UTC)

hums "and the cheese stands alone/the cheese stands alone/hi ho the derry oh/the cheese stands alone".
Seriously, good question. I've had quite a few, and -- checking wetware memory -- a Reuben, as opposed to a ham and cheese, is not especially layered. The cheese and dressing mix into the sauerkraut (or, as is quite common, cole slaw). Howard C. Berkowitz 20:55, 6 August 2010 (UTC)
Righto. I'll really have to make a pilgrimage to Vito and Schlomo's and see what they do it. It's about as authentic a NYC deli as a couple of Arizona boys can make in Tucson. Not great but any means, but solid. Hayford Peirce 21:02, 6 August 2010 (UTC)
You grill the sandwich over low to medium-low heat to allow sufficient time for the sandwich to brown on the outside while allowing time for the Swiss cheese to melt. You can grill the sandwich on a grill pan or you can cook the sandwich in a skillet. YIKES! it's just a sandwich :-)Mary Ash 21:05, 6 August 2010 (UTC)
Sounds like the way I would do it. Just checked the menu at Shlomo and Vito's (name correction) and they describe their Reuben as "Corned beef piled high with Swiss cheese, sauerkraut or slaw and Russian dressing, served on grilled marble rye" -- so I guess they're giving you a choice of kraut or slaw on it. Hayford Peirce 21:11, 6 August 2010 (UTC)
At "Practically Edible" they claim that the inside should stay relatively cold and the cheese should melt just a little. And they say that with cole slaw it should (or must) be called Rachel. --Peter Schmitt 21:20, 6 August 2010 (UTC)

{unindent} If you put coleslaw on the sandwich, instead of sauerkraut, it technically becomes a Rachel sandwich....ARRGH...I think it's time to watch Pentagon Wars. Mary Ash 21:33, 6 August 2010 (UTC)

Barbecue has religious sects. Why not sandwiches? Howard C. Berkowitz 21:27, 6 August 2010 (UTC)

Comment by Mary Ash

Rachel sandwich (copied from my talk page) --Peter Schmitt 09:31, 7 August 2010 (UTC)

LOL! for not participating. You may want to do some investigation but a Rachel sandwich is made using coleslaw. The sandwich can also be made from turkey, pastrami or corned beef. Most "ladies" sandwiches, which the Rachel is designed for, would not include "manly" pastrami or corned beef. Turkey was the preferred "ladies" fare. Now I'm off to fix French Dip sandwiches for dinner.Mary Ash 00:20, 7 August 2010 (UTC)

Link to the history of the Reuben and Rachel sandwiches. Also, a listing of famous sandwiches named after Hollywood and other famous stars. [4]Mary Ash 02:48, 7 August 2010 (UTC)
Thanks, Mary. But why don't you add information to Reuben sandwich where it belongs? I'll copy it to the talk page.
As for Rachel: I misinterpreted what I read. But the link you gave seems to justify my first definition. --Peter Schmitt 09:29, 7 August 2010 (UTC)