every city seems to have a little deli, market or restaurant that makes "the best" vietnamese style tofu hoagie. tofu hoagie = marinated tofu, shredded carrots and daikon, sprigs of cilantro, thin slices of jalapeno peppers and a hefty dash of sriracha. i've only sampled the wares in chicago (too greasy) and seattle (the insides were great but the bread was so crusty it hurt my mouth), but i still feel confident in naming west philadelphia's fu wah mini market (47th & baltimore ave.) the victor.
fu wah's hoagie rolls are always soft and fresh, the tofu is juicy, the vegetables are crunchy and everything is proportioned just right. each bite is a salty, spicy, zippy flavor explosion! and at $3.75 (remember when they used to be a flat 3 bucks? those were different times), you can throw in a bag of dirty chips and have yourself a wholly satisfying lunch for 5 dollars.
the outside lunch time world can be a cruel place for a cash strapped vegan. chinese food is usually gross, soups are made with chicken stock or cream, sushi is way expensive, and veggie sandwiches and salads are infuriatingly overpriced. tofu hoagie (or tof hoag, as we sometimes abbreviate) and the fine people at fu wah: i salute thee, for standing as a vegan beacon of light in the dark, meaty streets of philadelphia.