However, hot sliced (not ground) beef between two slices of toasted bread is referred to as a steak sandwich: it is the sliced loaf bread that distinguishes the steak sandwich from a burger.
The word butty (a reference to the fact that butter is often used in British sandwiches) is common in some northern parts of England as a slang synonym for "sandwich", particularly to refer to certain kinds of sandwiches including the chip butty, bacon butty, or sausage butty.
Sandwiches are a popular type of lunch food, taken to work, school, or picnics to be eaten as part of a packed lunch.
The bread may be plain or be coated with condiments, such as mayonnaise or mustard, to enhance its flavour and texture.
As well as being homemade, sandwiches are also widely sold in restaurants and can be served hot or cold.
British Home Stores sold pre-packed sandwiches in the 1960s (see the Radio Times 3 November 2018 p.
The immediate culinary precursor with a direct connection to the English sandwich was to be found in the Netherlands of the seventeenth century, where the naturalist John Ray observed that in the taverns beef hung from the rafters "which they cut into thin slices and eat with bread and butter laying the slices upon the butter"—explanatory specifications that reveal the Dutch belegde broodje, open-faced sandwich, was as yet unfamiliar in England.
Initially perceived as food that men shared while gaming and drinking at night, the sandwich slowly began appearing in polite society as a late-night meal among the aristocracy.
(In South Australia, there is a regional variant of the roll, superficially similar to a club sandwich, where the bread roll is sliced three times with parallel cuts, and filling is put in the first and third openings, but not the second.
This makes the resulting double cut roll easier to handle: the top half and the bottom half are eaten separately.) Any hot item based on a bread roll is referred to as a burger, never as a sandwich.