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Sep 5, 2007 09:48 AM

St. Paul Sandwich in/around DC?

I was re-watching the excellent documentary "Sandwiches You Will Like" when I got a sudden urge for a St. Paul Sandwich. Apparently it's unavailable outside St. Louis, MO, and is basically a deep fried egg foo young on Wonder bread with mayo, pickles, lettuce, and tomato, and is ridiculously cheap (around $2). Anybody know of a Chinese carryout that sells it and, barring that, who's got decent egg foo young that I can use to make this myself?

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  1. Holly Moore did a great job with that show. I really enjoyed it and boy did those sandwiches look good. Regional foods are so interesting. Who would think that a St. Paul sandwich was the "thing" in St. Louis, MO? It seems easy enough to make at home too. I just kinda doubt anyone makes it around here. Hopefully you find good egg foo young!

    5 Replies
    1. re: monavano

      Seems like St. Louis still has a few chop suey houses hanging on peddling Americanized Chinese food. Don't think DC ever had any.

      I've spent the past few years sampling Chinese carryout chicken wings to find ones that are crisp without being greasy. I guess I have to start all over sampling egg foo young.

      I was intrigued by the Maid Rite loose meat sandwiches. Looks like the company plans on expanding, but unfortunately, nowhere near DC.

      1. re: monkeyrotica

        I've seen the Maid Rite sandwiches on TV before, but don't understand the appeal, is there more to it than just cooked ground beef on a bun? Special spices? Looks like it could be difficult to eat. How is this diff from a burger?

        1. re: MsDiPesto

          It's just a loose meat sandwich; they're a staple of midwest county fairs. But I believe Maid Rite grinds their own beef from a variety of cuts, some lean, some fatty. It's also cooked in a special type of cooker. And I'm pretty sure the only spices are salt and pepper, added just before serving. If the meat's good enough, you shouldn't have to bring much to it. Compare plain salt/pepper Texas brisket to something smothered in rub and drowned in a sweet sauce. Completely different flavors.

          As for eating, it's a mess, like a good Philly cheesesteak, so you need a certain technique. Seated, you eat the sandwich and use a spoon to scoop up the excess.

          1. re: monkeyrotica

            I lived in Sioux City, Iowa for awhile and we called loose meat sandwiches, "taverns". Your description is pretty right on. Just some Ground beef, some spices (the rumor was that some people used cream of mushroom soup) on an untoasted enriched hamburger bun and some diced raw onions. But if you are feeling daring, you can sometimes get a slice of American cheese on it.

            I was never a fan of loose meat sandwiches, but what I was a fan of what they call onion chips. Individually sliced pieces of onion deep fried in a deep fried curd like batter served with this highly addictive dip made up of finely chopped raw onion, sour cream and cream cheese.

      2. re: monavano

        FYI...though Holly Moore did appear in the show, "Sandwiches That You Will Like" was produced and narrated by the great Rick Sebak.

      3. You're in Old Town Alexandria, right? It's been a long time since I've been there, but Ginger Beef on Pitt St used to have a surprisingly good egg foo young, and it's the sort of Chinese place that also features subs and wings, so I wouldn't be surprised if they could make it as a sandwich (although probably for more than $2).

        Ginger Beef Old Towne
        430 N Pitt St, Alexandria, VA 22314