The Gatsby Sandwich

The Gatsby takes its name from a character in the novel "The Great Gatsby" by F. Scott Fitzgerald.

Originating from the vibrant heart of Cape Town, South Africa, the Gatsby is a delightful culinary treat celebrated widely across the Western Cape province. This submarine sandwich, famous for its generous size, effortlessly feeds several people, making it a popular choice for social gatherings and festive events.

The Gatsby boasts a crispy, warm bread roll overflowing with freshly cooked chips (akin to French fries) and a diverse choice of tantalizing fillings. These can range from succulent strips of steak to spicy grilled chicken, or even freshly caught fish, creating a fusion of flavors that truly capture the spirit of South African cuisine. Completing the ensemble, a selection of rich, tangy, and sometimes spicy sauces are drizzled over the top, soaking into every crevice of the sandwich, making each bite an experience in itself.

Crafting the Perfect Gatsby Sandwich: A Masterclass

In the diverse realm of Gatsby sandwich preparation, an array of mouth-watering ingredients come into play. Whether you opt for succulent beef, tender pork, or juicy chicken, the options for protein in this iconic South African sub are ample, catering to a variety of palate preferences. Some aficionados even venture into the realm of cold cuts, presenting an alternative take on this hearty dish, adding an unexpected twist to the classic Gatsby.

The Gatsby Sandwich
The Gatsby Sandwich

Moving on to the verdant heart of the sandwich, the choice of fillings is an equally important decision. Crisp lettuce leaves, fresh, juicy tomatoes, sharp, tangy onions, and cool, refreshing cucumbers are commonly found nestled within the bread roll. These ingredients not only provide a satisfying crunch to complement the tender meat, but they also imbue the Gatsby with a layer of freshness, balancing out the robust flavors.

Last but not least, the crowning glory of the Gatsby sandwich is undeniably the sauce. The options here range from the universally loved ketchup, with its sweet and tangy profile, to the fiery piri piri sauce for those who enjoy a bit of heat. Mayonnaise also holds its ground as a popular choice, its creamy, rich texture binding all the components together and amplifying the overall flavor. This combination of ingredients results in a Gatsby that’s as delicious as it is customizable, truly an epitome of South African culinary diversity.

Preserving the Perfection: Expert Tips for Storing Your Gatsby Sandwich

In order to maintain the freshness and taste of your Gatsby sandwich, it’s crucial to store it properly. The challenge lies in keeping the ingredients intact and avoiding the unappetizing sogginess that can often occur with poorly stored sandwiches. A simple yet effective method is to wrap your Gatsby in parchment paper or waxed paper. These materials provide a protective barrier, helping to retain the sandwich’s natural moisture while preventing additional dampness from setting in.

Tightly wrapping your Gatsby sandwich in plastic wrap serves another crucial purpose – it keeps loose ingredients together. Ensuring that every bite of your sandwich is as good as the first, this method of storage not only prevents ingredients from spilling out, but also preserves the structural integrity of the Gatsby sandwich. As a result, you’re greeted with a sandwich that’s just as tempting and delicious as when it was first prepared.

Understanding how to store your Gatsby sandwich is essential in enjoying this South African culinary delight to the fullest. With these storage tips, you can relish the flavors of the sandwich for longer periods, making sure that each bite is a taste adventure. Whether you’re enjoying a Gatsby sandwich at home, planning a picnic, or prepping a workday lunch, the right storage techniques can significantly enhance your dining experience.

Birth and Evolution: The Remarkable Journey of the Gatsby Sandwich

In the heart of Cape Town, nestled within the Cape Flats area, a humble yet mouth-watering dish was born in 1976. The Gatsby sandwich, a culinary brainchild of Rashaad Pandy, began its journey as a quick, hearty meal for hardworking men assisting Pandy in his food shop’s renovation. The delectable creation consisted of a generously filled large round loaf, packed with slap chips (a South African variant of fries sprinkled with vinegar), savory polony sausage, and tangy achaar, and neatly cut into manageable wedges.

Amongst the workers was a man nicknamed “Froggy,” whose declaration changed the course of this sandwich’s history. As he bit into the generous wedge, Froggy exclaimed it was a “Gatsby smash”, referencing the recently screened movie, ‘The Great Gatsby’, at a local Athlone cinema. The name resonated, encapsulating the opulent abundance and unique charm of the sandwich, and it immediately stuck, perfectly embodying the large, shared meal’s lavish appeal.

The Gatsby sandwich’s tale doesn’t end there. Pandy, capitalizing on the popularity and appeal of this flavorful marvel, began offering the sandwich in his shop. What had started as a simple, filling meal for a group of workers quickly gained fame, becoming a sought-after dish across Cape Town and beyond. This rich narrative adds an extra layer of appeal to the Gatsby sandwich, underlining its deep roots in the community, adaptability, and culinary innovation.

The Metropolitan City of Cape Town, SCape Town, South Africa: A Majestic Metropolis in the Embrace of Natureouth Africa

Nestled on South Africa’s southwest coast, Cape Town gracefully straddles the fine line between urban advancement and natural splendor. This dynamic port city boasts a prime location on a peninsula, lying beneath the formidable shadow of Table Mountain. The city’s unique geographic positioning, combined with its rich cultural heritage, paints a vibrant tableau that’s deeply captivating.

Cape Town, South Africa
Cape Town, South Africa

Table Mountain, the city’s landmark, watches over Cape Town like a silent sentinel. Here, slow-turning cable cars ascend to the flat summit, transporting visitors to a panoramic spectacle of grandeur. From this elevated vantage point, the city unfurls in all its glory. Your gaze can sweep across the urban landscapes, the bustling harbor teeming with activity, and even the far-off boats embarking on their voyage to Robben Island.

Robben Island, however, is not just any island. It bears testament to a significant chapter of South Africa’s history. This once notorious prison, which held Nobel Laureate Nelson Mandela captive, has been repurposed into a living museum. Its profound narrative echoes with resilience, and the boats leaving the harbor, heading towards the island, serve as a poignant reminder of the city’s – and country’s – journey through time.

Tracing the Footsteps of Time: A Short History of Cape Town

The Cape of Good Hope, a promontory on the southern tip of Africa, holds historical secrets dating back about 15,000 years. An integral chapter of human history has unfolded here, marked by the footprints of ancient civilizations that found their home amidst its rugged beauty.

In 1652, the Dutch saw the strategic importance of this captivating cape and decided to lay down roots. They established a thriving port city, marking the onset of an era of European influence in this region. Just over a century later, in 1773, the British too perceived the potential of this port city. They made their initial incursion, bringing with them a new wave of cultural exchange, and christened the city as Cape Town.

In the years that followed, Cape Town found itself in the midst of a tug-of-war, changing hands between the Dutch and the British several times. It wasn’t until 1814 that the city’s fate was sealed. The Dutch finally ceded Cape Town to the British, concluding a pivotal chapter in the city’s diverse history and marking the beginning of its next era under British rule.

Exploring Cape Town: A Haven for Wanderlust and Culture

Cape Town, a vibrant port city, provides a unique kaleidoscope of cultures, cuisines, and breathtaking landscapes. This enticing metropolis nestles beneath the majestic grandeur of the Table Mountain National Park, its natural crown adding an impressive backdrop to the city’s life.

The city’s beauty extends from the flat-topped Table Mountain, cascading down to the cerulean waters of Table Bay. Cape Town’s aesthetic appeal is unmistakable, offering vistas that captivate and inspire visitors from around the world. Yet, the city is more than just a pretty face; it thrives as a dynamic and ever-evolving hub of activity.

The pulse of Cape Town beats to a rhythm of multicultural diversity, encapsulated in its flourishing arts district. A myriad of dining options paint a mouth-watering palette of global cuisines, while the city’s nightlife vibrates with an innovative spirit that spills onto its streets after sundown. This is a testament to the city’s creativity, lifestyle, and progressive mindset, all of which work together to make Cape Town an intriguing, vibrant metropolis worth exploring.

Savoring South Africa: A Culinary Journey Through Its Diverse Traditions

South African cuisine showcases a rich tapestry of culinary traditions, each a reflection of the varied communities inhabiting the country. Drawing from the cultural practices of its indigenous peoples, South Africa presents a unique, mouth-watering array of food that tells the story of its vibrant history and multicultural diversity.

There’s a strong culture of eating out in South Africa that embraces both tradition and innovation. Restaurants across the country masterfully serve traditional South African dishes, reimagining old favorites and pushing the boundaries of culinary creativity. These dining establishments provide locals and tourists alike with the opportunity to experience authentic South African cuisine in a warm and inviting atmosphere.

Yet, the culinary landscape of South Africa doesn’t end with its native dishes. It’s a crossroads where the flavors of the world intersect. Restaurants specializing in various international cuisines dot the cityscapes and townships. From Moroccan to Chinese, West African to Congolese, and Japanese to Italian, the country’s dining scene paints a vibrant palette of global flavors, offering a culinary journey that stretches far beyond its borders.

Cosy Corner
119 Ottery Rd, Wynberg
Cape Town, 7824, South Africa
Telephone: +27-21-797-2498

Cosy Corner CPT
It's Gatsby Friday

Established in 1973, Cosy Corner was one of Cape Town’s first Halaal eateries and remains one of its most popular.

Cosy Corner is a family business with a history. Locals will tell you about the part Cosy Corner played in the apartheid struggle, but it also features in many more personal and romantic stories – of engagements, family reunions, and birthdays. New generations of Capetonians and visitors continue to support the establishment that will become part of their nostalgia.

Cosy Corner is open all day and until 2 am at night. A trip to Cape Town isn’t complete without a visit.

Mastering the Art of the Gatsby Sandwich: A Step-by-Step Guide

Let’s embark on the culinary journey of creating the mighty Gatsby Sandwich, a dish known for its generous portions that encourage communal eating. This isn’t just any sandwich; it’s a giant celebration of flavors, designed to be shared, savored, and enjoyed by many. Therefore, when you plan on making a Gatsby, ensure you have enough hungry folks ready to relish it.

The secret to a successful Gatsby lies in strategic organization and proper sequencing of tasks. Begin with the fries – their crispy, golden perfection takes a little time, but it’s a crucial first step. The aroma wafting from the sizzling fries will create an inviting culinary stage for the subsequent steps.

Next, shift your attention to frying the eggs and toasting the bread. Timing is vital here: the goal is to ensure every element, from the fries to the eggs and bread, stays warm. If you get the sequencing right, you’ll assemble a Gatsby that’s not just a sandwich but an experience — a steaming, delicious testament to your culinary prowess, ready to be enjoyed the moment it’s served.

Essential Elements for Crafting a Gatsby Sandwich

Each ingredient adds a chapter to this delicious tale, while the necessary tools and equipment act as the narrators, guiding each component into its rightful place. As we prepare to delve into this culinary journey, let’s familiarize ourselves with the essentials needed to bring our Gatsby Sandwich to life.

Ingredients for Gatsby Sandwich
Ingredients for Gatsby Sandwich



Crafting the Quintessential Gatsby Sandwich

Time needed: 25 minutes

How to make the Gatsby Sandwich

  1. Preheat the Oven

    Preheat the oven to 400 f.

  2. Cook the Fries

    Cook the french fries in the oven for 20 minutes or until done. Remove and set aside for later use.

  3. Toast the Bread

    Five minutes before the fries are done cut the french bread lengthwise and put it into the oven to toast. Remove and set aside for later use.

  4. Cook the Eggs

    In a skillet heat oil over medium heat, and cook the eggs to the desired doneness. Remove from skillet and set aside for later use.

  5. Assemble the Sandwich

    Arrange the french fries on the bottom half, and then cover with the ketchup and hot sauce

  6. Add the Vegetables

    Lay the tomato slices, onion slices, and cucumber slices on top of the fries.

  7. Fill with Meat

    Lay the roast beef evenly across the top.

  8. Lay the Eggs

    Lay the eggs, cheese, and top with lettuce then cover with the top half of the roll.

  9. Slice and Serve

    Slice the sandwich into 4 even pieces and serve with a tropical smoothie.

The Gatsby Sandwich
The Gatsby Sandwich

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The Gatsby Sandwich

The Gatsby Sandwich

Recipe Author | Captain Cook
Savor a taste of South Africa with the iconic Gatsby Sandwich. Large enough to satisfy a crowd and loaded with tantalizing flavors, this all-day delicacy guarantees a culinary adventure like no other. With each bite, experience the well-balanced blend of hearty fillings encapsulated in a crusty roll – a true celebration of South African street food culture.

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Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 15 minutes
Total Time 25 minutes
Servings 4 servings
Calories 349 kcal



  • Preheat the oven to 400 f.
  • Cook the french fries in the oven for 20 minutes or until done. Remove and set aside for later use.
    2 cups thick-cut French fries
  • Five minutes before the fries are done cut the french bread lengthwise and put it into the oven to toast. Remove and set aside for later use.
    1 French Baguette
  • In a skillet heat oil over medium heat, and cook the eggs to the desired doneness. Remove from skillet and set aside for later use.
    1 tbsp canola oil, 4 eggs
  • Arrange the french fries on the bottom half, and then cover with the ketchup and hot sauce
  • Lay the tomato slices, onion slices, and cucumber slices on top of the fries.
    1 tomatoes, 1 cucumbers, ¼ yellow onion
  • Lay the roast beef evenly across the top.
    6 oz roast beef deli meat
  • Lay the eggs, cheese, and top with lettuce then cover with the top half of the roll.
    4 slices American cheese, ½ cup iceberg lettuce
  • Slice the sandwich into 4 even pieces and serve with a tropical smoothie.


Calories: 349kcalCarbohydrates: 23.9gProtein: 25.1gFat: 18.7gSaturated Fat: 6.3gPolyunsaturated Fat: 682gCholesterol: 21mgSodium: 598mgFiber: 2.2gSugar: 4.6gCalcium: 175mgIron: 10mg
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Complementary Dishes for Your Gatsby Sandwich Experience

Unleash the full potential of your Gatsby Sandwich experience by pairing it with these highly recommended side dishes. Each dish has been selected for its ability to complement the bold flavors of the Gatsby Sandwich, enhancing your culinary journey through South Africa. Whether you prefer something light and refreshing or hearty and satisfying, there’s a recipe here to complete your meal.

Batido de Trigo ~ Wheat Milkshake
Indeed, this luscious milkshake, crafted with the richness of sweetened condensed milk, whole milk, and puffed wheat cereal, will make your tastebuds rejoice in delight. So, why wait? Immerse yourself in this Cuban sensation and let the celebration begin!
Check out this recipe
Batido de Trigo ~ Wheat Milkshake

As you dive deeper into South African cuisine, these additional dishes will help to round out your experience. Pairing your Gatsby Sandwich with these complementary recipes allows for a richer understanding and appreciation of this diverse culinary landscape. Whether you’re preparing for a themed dinner party or looking to broaden your own culinary repertoire, these pairings promise an unforgettable taste of South Africa. Enjoy!

Photo Credits:

  • By Taste The World Cookbook – Copyright 2022 All rights reserved.
  • By Cosy Corner – By
  • By Discott – Own work, CC BY-SA 4.0,
  • By A3alb – Own work, CC BY-SA 4.0,
  • By SkyPixels – Own work, CC BY-SA 4.0,
  • By SkyPixels – Own work, CC BY-SA 4.0,
  • By SkyPixels – Own work, CC BY-SA 4.0,
  • By © Moheen Reeyad, CC BY-SA 4.0,
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Captain Cook
Captain Cook
If you strip away the labels and isms and meta tags, what are you left with? Are you strong and free enough as an individual to survive the loss of all those crutches and maintain reason and meaning? Can you use the power of thought and choice to walk the road of life?
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