Arguing about whether a hot dog is a sandwich makes as much sense as arguing whether a tomato is a fruit or a vegetable. The answer always depends on the larger context. Classifying food combinations may be a fool's errand in the long run, as dishes from around the world exist along an amazing spectrum, but we still try. The question that rules over food classification is, do we define food by its structure, or its ingredients?
The reality is, a vanilla soy latte is a type of three-bean soup.— Lockwood DeWitt (@lockwooddewitt) August 8, 2017
Er, maybe ingredients don't work so well. Enter the Cube Rule of Food, which classifies combination foods by the location of the starch. The classifications are toast, sandwich, taco, sushi, quiche, and calzone. Most of what we eat regularly belongs in one of those categories. Since structure matters and ingredients don't in this system, you find that Pop Tarts are calzones, pigs in a blanket are sushi, and a hot dog is a taco. It makes perfect sense. Pie? Pie can exist in several categories, depending on how it is made and how it is sliced. There is an extra category for foods with no starch, meaning that steak is classified as salad. That's just the beginning of the weirdness you'll find in the Cube Rule. -via Metafilter
(Image credit: @Phosphatide)