The Great Gatsby

A South African sandwich named for a film.

By The Editors

Published on March 8, 2010

In Cape Town, South Africa, a Gatsby is a soft, foot-long roll stuffed with fish or meat, vinegary french fries known as slap chips, and a sauce—usually achar (curried Indian pickle) or piri piri (a chile sauce). Rashaad Pandy of the fish-and-chips shop Super Fisheries, in the Athlone area on the city's outskirts, claims to have invented it one night in 1976 when, trying to feed some day laborers he had hired, he found that he had sold out of fish. So he filled a round Portuguese loaf with what he had: chips, fried bologna, and achar. One man exclaimed, "This is fantastic—a Gatsby smash!" (Smash was local slang for a tasty dish.) The film The Great Gatsby had recently played to enthusiastic crowds at the Athlone Bioscope. The early Gatsby's round loaf was also said to be shaped like the newsboy cap worn by Robert Redford in the movie.

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