Acquired Taste: Blood Rice Cakes With Timothy DeLaGhetto and Justina Valentine
Italian: Prosciutto paninoWhat is it? So many of Italy’s most famous ingredients stuffed into one sandwich that it even boasts the red, white, and green colors of the flag, is what it is. Think slabs of mozzarella, silky prosciutto, and basil leaves on a roll.
The East Dallas grocer and hot-food purveyor keeps things classic here, with fresh mozzarella, tomato, and prosciutto topped with basil and a drizzle of olive oil.
French: Croque-madameWhat is it? The Frenchiest of French sandwiches, the croque-madame is actually the classic croque- monsieur -- grilled ham and Gruyère cheese -- topped with creamy béchamel or creamy-cheesy Mornay sauce and a fried egg. Throw your calorie counting out the door with this baby.
The Uptown bistro subs big-eye Swiss cheese for the Gruyere, but otherwise, the ham, fried egg, and Mornay sauce keep this classic close to the original, right down to the accompanying mound of crisp pommes frites. The sandwich is available at lunch and dinner but, surprisingly, not at brunch, though we bet the kitchen wouldn't deny you one on a Sunday morning.
Vietnamese: Bánh mìWhat is it? A mix of Vietnamese culinary custom and French baking tradition, the bánh mì is Euro-Asian fusion in the palm of your hand. In its most popular form, grilled pork, pickled cucumber and carrots, jalapeño slices, and sometimes foie gras are stacked on a fresh-baked baguette.
You won’t find foie gras at this fast-casual mini-chain, but varieties featuring ham and pork belly; Korean BBQ-style beef and kimchi; tofu and veggies; and roast chicken are sure to keep you occupied. These sandwiches are hefty, but save room to make dessert out of the decadently sweet and creamy Vietnamese iced coffee.
Latin American: ArepaWhat is it? Anything from eggs to veggies to meat is stuffed into a cornmeal or corn flour pocket and served hot from the griddle.
At this Oak Lawn bakery-restaurant, arepa fillings come in all stripes, from vegetables only, egg, and shredded beef to ham and cheese, and even prosciutto. Plus, you have the option of stuffing your arepa with any combination of ingredients.
German: Bratwurst on a bunWhat is it? A thick pork and/or beef sausage tucked into a soft roll and usually topped with loads of sauerkraut and spicy mustard.
This Downtown beer hall serves a decidedly German-skewing menu, with the star of the show being suds-friendly wursts on locally sourced buns. Options in addition to the almighty brat include the all-beef wiener (insert chuckles here) and kielbasa, and sweet and hot peppers, grilled onions and sauerkraut are among the options for topping your tube steak.
Turkish: Doner kebapWhat is it? This famed Turkish street food is made from spit-roasted lamb that's thinly sliced and served on pita bread with yogurt.
This Austin-imported outlet was launched by two UT students who missed the Turkish specialty they enjoyed in their native Germany. Now, they have more than two dozen locations throughout Texas and plans to expand to the East Coast in 2016. VertsKebap serves a beef-and-lamb iteration in kebap form (on bread), but also in a wrap or on a salad.
Greek: GyroWhat is it? The classic Greek dish of a cone of beef, veal, or chicken vertically rotisseried, carved into slices, and served on a pita with tomato, onion ,and creamy tzatziki sauce.
One of Dallas’ favorite chefs hails from Chicago and serves regional favorites from his youth at his Deep Ellum hot dog and burger joint. A hidden gem on the menu is the Greek Town gyro, which piles ground lamb-and-beef slices on a fluffy pita with red onion, olives, and a cucumber-mint sauce. If you can pull yourself away from the Uncle Herky burger, the gyro is a dish worthy of your attention.
Cuban: CubanoWhat is it? Roasted pork, ham, and Swiss cheese come together with pickles and mustard on a medianoche bun, and the whole darn mess is griddled to melty perfection.
This Latin American sweets shop may be a bit of a trek, being in Carrollton, but just think: the bakery-restaurant's beloved Cubano gets to be your reward. The bread is the trickiest but most vital part of a Cubano, and the Dulceria gets it just right -- thin, crispy, and perfect for holding in the layers of meats, cheese, and pickles.
Mexican: TortaWhat is it? A griddled sandwich filled with Mexican savories like chorizo, pastor pork, bistec, chicken, and sausage.
While this eatery specializing in Mexico City-style favorites offers a laundry list of tacos, sopes, gorditas, and authentic quesadillas, the tortas take up most of the menu. Dine with a group and order up a bunch, filled with ham and pineapple, sausage, eggs, chicken, steak, and enough additional iterations to keep you noshing for the better part of an evening.
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Farah Fleurima is the foodie-centric travelista behind The Dallas Diva, and jelly sandwiches are her, um ... jam. Follow her tasty exploits on Twitter at @thedallasdiva.