Italian subs are a timeless classic and have been a staple in plenty of sandwich shops throughout Massachusetts for some time now. You often hear it argued that no two places make an Italian sandwich alike and that’s likely due to the fact that people very much enjoy customizing their Italian subs! Some enjoy their sandwich with hots, while others completely avoid said spiciness. Customization is what makes the Italian sub such a popular option, but there are definitely some essentials that belong in your sandwich if you’re looking for a true Italian sub experience. Don’t forget, you can make these at home!

The Meat

The meat you choose is perhaps one of the most crucial aspects of the entire sandwich. If you’re in Boston’s North End, stop by Bricco Salumeria and peruse our selection of cured Italian meats. Since eating a sandwich stuffed full of meat can be an unbalanced experience, ask the person at the deli to slice your meats thinly. After all, texture is everything. Typically, we enjoy selecting three or four meats for an Italian sandwich. Some of our suggestions include mortadella, soppressata, spicy coppa, and parma cotto.

The Bread

When it comes to your bread choice, you really don’t have to get too crazy. Basic sub rolls you’d find at the supermarket will serve just fine. If you wanted to take it up a notch and get a sturdier, higher end sub roll then no one will stop you.

The Cheese

We’re not going to beat around the bush here. The only cheese you should be putting on your Italian sandwich is provolone, nothing else. Just like your chosen meats, you’ll want the cheese to be thinly sliced.

The Lettuce

While some people might find iceberg lettuce just a bit boring, it’s perfect for an Italian sub. When constructing your sandwich, you’re going to want lettuce with some real crunch. Iceberg is that lettuce. You might find yourself fighting the urge to throw something in that packs more of a nutritional punch, but it’s in your best interest to leave the fancy greens out.

The Onions

Some people abhor onions in their sandwiches, like my mother for example. However, if you slice them thin and soak them in some ice water, they can be an absolute delight. Soaking them in ice water cools their raw bite, by the way, and might just change your disposition about onions in your Italian sub.

The Additions

Condiments make the sandwich world spin round, especially when it comes to the Italian sub. Mayonnaise, across the board, can be a hit or miss. Try a pickled vegetable spread for sure, like some chile spread for a little heat, or bottled giardiniera. While this next bit might be in bad taste, we’ll consider tomatoes to be an addition to the sandwich as well. They can help transform the sandwich, but tomatoes sadly fall into the same category as mayonnaise when it comes to being an iffy factor for many people.

The Dressing

This is the mecca. You absolutely cannot skimp on the dressing. It’s the finishing touch that ties the entire sandwich together. Use a good amount of olive oil and red wine vinegar to dress your sandwich, and follow those two up with just a few pinches of dried oregano.

There you go, that’s your Italian sub. You can purchase all of these ingredients yourself and craft a sandwich at home that is truly your own. Give it a shot and enjoy the delicious results. If you’re in need of the essential ingredients, come down to Bricco Salumeria. If you have any questions about our general item stock, give us a call at 617-248-9629.