Sarah Green, 10Best.com
If you've ever visited New York, or are lucky enough to live here, you know that there is no city more deserving of the name "the city that never sleeps." With thousands of restaurants and delis open around the clock, there is certainly no shortage of good food, and perhaps the most iconic is pastrami.
Pastrami has a strong presence in New York, one that can be traced back to the Romanian Jews who immigrated here in 1872, bringing the traditions of their homeland with them. Once in America they found beef to be more affordable than pastrami typically made from goose breast, and soon adapted their recipe.
Today you see pastrami from all different cuts of beef in different parts of the country, but the most popular is the belly, and brisket in particular. It takes bringing, numerous spices (including a lot of pepper), smoking, and finally steaming to make this typically tough piece of meat worth the wait, and New Yorkers stand in line for a good pastrami sandwich day in and day out.
Seek out a traditional institution like Katz's Delicatessen on Houston St. and you'll find heaping sandwiches, perfectly prepared, of pastrami on rye. The recently reopened 2nd Ave Deli at 162 East 33rd Street has garnered much acclaim, and for good reason: it takes two hands to hold its pastrami sandwich. Blooms Deli, in the heart of the city on Lexington Avenue, is one of the few places to enjoy a pastrami sandwich on gluten-free bread.
Each place has a committed following of customers who keep coming back for more. While anything can be put between two slices of bread and called a sandwich, it's the ingredients that count, and these delis offer some of the very best.
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