A plaque remaining from the Big Apple Night Club at West 135th Street and Seventh Avenue in Harlem.

Above, a 1934 plaque from the Big Apple Night Club at West 135th Street and Seventh Avenue in Harlem. Discarded as trash in 2006. Now a Popeyes fast food restaurant on Google Maps.

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Entry from October 06, 2014
Chopped Cheese

The bodega sandwich of “chopped cheese” is similar to a cheeseburger or a Philly cheesesteak. The sandwich includes chopped ground beef and cheese, plus mayo and other ingredients (such as lettuce, tomatoes and peppers). It’s not clear where and when the sandwich originated; some claim that it began in Harlem under the name of “chop cheese.” The sandwich is also popular in the Bronx.
“Chopped cheese burger” was cited in print in 2008. “In the 90s,  the playwrights say, they remember growing up in Harlem around Mom and Pop shops that sold unique products like chop cheese sandwiches, made with ground beef rolled into bread” was cited in 2011. The chopped cheese was popularized on the October 5, 2014 “Bronx” episode of CNN’s Anthony Bourdain: Parts Unknown.
“Chopped cheese is just a deconstructed cheeseburger” is a common saying.
Wikipedia: Chopped cheese
The chopped cheese, also known as the chop cheese, is a type of sandwich originating from New York City. Found in bodegas throughout Upper Manhattan, Brooklyn, the Bronx, and Queens, it is made on a grill with ground beef (typically pre-formed ground beef patties), onions, adobo or other seasonings, and cheese, all of which are chopped together on the grill as the meat and onions cook and the cheese melts. It is served with lettuce, tomatoes, and condiments on a hero roll.
The actual origins of the sandwich are up for debate, although generally most agree it was first created in a Spanish Harlem bodega called Hajji’s Deli, also known as Blue Sky Deli. There is speculation that the sandwich was an adaptation of an Arab specialty, dagha yamneeya (دقة يمنية), which is essentially cooked chopped meat and vegetables served with Yemeni bread. Hajji’s Deli claims a former worker invented the sandwich for himself sometime in the 1990s, after which the concept spread to other bodegas.
wavery_johnson Says:
December 23rd, 2008 at 11:29 am
Chopped cheese burger>>>>
City Gal Speaks 
Mental Slave Emancipator Volume #1
They nodded, chorally answered my rants, and copied work from the board and pretended not to notice me winding thru the pathways collecting bodega bags, going to the trash bin, unraveling warm “chopped cheese” sandwiches and candy, squashing the sandwiches and disposing (because it will not be in tact for you to even THINK about eating it)
Yall aint got shxt on our chop cheese dyre ave RT @FlyyGuyFresh: http://twitpic.com/lkhza - Chop Cheese from the ugliest chef on Money Ave
9:39 PM - 14 Oct 2009
Jaded Letterman
#uknowuinharlem wen corner store chef name is mike…nd his specialty is chop cheese not chopped cheese but chop!!
9:39 PM - 8 Dec 2009
Alnjoom Deli Grocery (Hajji’s)
Deli / Bodega
2135 1st Ave, New York, NY, United States
Get the chopped cheese (like a hamburger cheesesteak)
Jeremy Fisher · December 10, 2009
#1 for chop cheese!!!
Nid · June 1, 2010
Chopped cheese
Gigi H.
Manhattan, NY
Chopped cheese- put your hero bread to toast.. Start cooking the Ground beef. Put it on a grill, seasoned it with paprika, and at the end melt the cheese on top of the meat.. Put mayo on the bread then accommodate the meat and cheese on the bread .. Put lettuce and tomatoes.. Salt vinegar oil pepper.. ketchup hot sauce. Whatever you like on it.. Close it and eat it.. Enjoy
City Beats
Residents question Harlem’s longevity as the Black Mecca
Posted on 11 December 2011
By Dervedia Thomas
In the 90s,  the playwrights say, they remember growing up in Harlem around Mom and Pop shops that sold unique products like chop cheese sandwiches, made with ground beef rolled into bread, as well as roti -a West Indian flatbread made with curry.
Serious Eats
A Sandwich A Day: The Spicy Chopped Cheese From Uni One Gourmet Deli

Nov 13, 2012 11:30AM
The Chopped Cheese at Uni One strays from the Philly formula there when rather than just topping with pickled peppers, they add a whole slew of ‘em directly to the griddle. I’d estimate it at at least a 50/50 blend of pepper to steak, with a few slices of cheese melted into it. The whole hot mess gets piled into a hoagie roll that’s serviceable, but certainly doesn’t have the crisp-chewy texture of the bread from Philly institutions like Sarcone or Amoroso. The entire sandwich ceases to be a cheesesteak when the shredded iceberg and tomato get placed on top, but you know what? I don’t give much credence to authenticity anyhow.
This thing is sloppy and delicious, hot and tangy, and when you consider there are places where $4 won’t even get you a soda alone, pretty insanely cheap.
Uni One Gourmet Deli
3153 Broadway New York, NY 10027
The Bodega Chronicles
February 5, 2013
KarmaloopTV Presents | Munchies with @40oz_Van
After seeing this I am about to make a pit stop and pick one up haven’t had one in a while. Chopped Cheese and Uptown Version of The Philly Cheese Steak but with Ground Beef. S/O To Dark, UPTNY and The Homie Broadway Boss.
Hood Cooking, Suburban Lifestyle Episode One: The Chopped Cheese
Chvos Smith
Published on Apr 22, 2014
Tune in as we show y’all how to make a chopped cheese.
Featuring rapper Atomic Blue, and SuperMook star James Smith, it’s episode one of Hood Cooking, Suburban lifestyle.
The Brian Lehrer Show
Bourdain Goes To The Bronx

Thursday, October 02, 2014
Anthony Bourdain, host of CNN’s “Parts Unknown”, has been all over the world—from Vietnam to Colombia to Kurdistan. But in this week’s episode, he visits the Bronx for a deep look at the borough’s hip-hop history, Garifuna food, and even a chopped cheese sandwich.
Damn shortie giving away the chopped cheese bodega secret yo #PartsUnknown
8:59 PM - 5 Oct 2014
Felix Barrios
Alright let’s settle this who has the best chopped cheese in the city ? 164 & Broadway or 110th and 1st ?
9:04 PM - 5 Oct 2014
Ericka Elaine
#PartsUnknown #Bronx White folk aren’t supposed to know about Chopped Cheese sandwiches. That’s a secret for Harlem and BX only. lol
9:19 PM - 5 Oct 2014
Chop cheese originated in harlem at hajis on 109 and 1st avenue @Bourdain #PartsUnknown
9:24 PM - 5 Oct 2014
Santiago’s deli on Saint Nick and 164 got the best chopped cheese in all of uptown. Straight music.
10:06 PM - 5 Oct 2014
Swaggy McKormick
10:14 PM - 5 Oct 2014
I know I’m late but after watchin Anthony Bourdains Bronx special smh. The Chopped Cheese is a Harlem creation, not the Bronx !
12:01 AM - 6 Oct 2014

Posted by Barry Popik
New York CityFood/Drink • Monday, October 06, 2014 • Permalink

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