A peek at the snacks of France and China: Sandwich vs. roujiamo

Easy to make and enjoy, the sandwich is a popular food that’s enjoyed around the world, especially in Western countries. In China, there is a snack that looks similar to a sandwich but has a longer history. The making of roujiamo – which translates as “meat burger” or “meat sandwich” – has a history dating back more than 2,000 years in China.

A file photo shows a baguette sandwich, a popular snack in France. /CFP

A file photo shows a baguette sandwich, a popular snack in France. /CFP

In France, besides the kind made with toast, people also make sandwiches with baguettes, a long, thin type of bread of French origin. Sliced in half, the crispy baguette, together with sliced ham, cheese and fresh vegetables such as tomato, lettuce and cucumber, makes a quick and delicious meal.

A file photo shows roujiamo, a popular snack in China. /CFP

A file photo shows roujiamo, a popular snack in China. /CFP

Compared to sandwiches, roujiamo are not as easy to make at home since the braised meat takes time to prepare. But it is easy to find roujiamo stalls on the street or order the snack online. The juicy braised meat is shredded and mixed with sliced pointed green peppers and coriander before stuffed into baked baiji bread, resulting in a mouth-watering snack.

Originating from northwestern China, roujiamo are now a popular snack enjoyed all across the country. In recent years, roujiamo stores have opened in a long list of overseas countries, making the Chinese snack familiar to more and more people and earning it the better-known name of the “Chinese burger.”