If you want to make a cheese steak, there are very few ingredients.
- Hoagie roll
- Cheese (Provolone, Mozzarella, or Cheese Whiz)
Optionally, you can add ketchup or marinara sauce as a topping. There are a few places where you can add mushrooms. There are many places where you can change it into a cheese steak hoagie by adding lettuce and tomatoes.
If you go to Pat's or Geno's, you're expected to know what you want and order that way. "Provolone wit(h onions)" or "Cheese Whiz". They're not going to add green peppers and they won't have Swiss cheese. They may not be the best but they're the longest running places in the business since Pat's started it.
It's a Cheese Steak--don't mess it up!
Update 2014.03.19: You've probably seen the Cheese Steak Shuffle on Geico advertisements. Whatever works. Apparently, the Vento family is going all out to make some extra fame for their business.
I went to a place that advertised cheese steaks and they tried to put Swiss Cheese on it with mayonnaise. When I told the cashier I wanted Provolone, she apparently forgot to add it, but took off the Swiss, so someone said "Cheese Steak, No Cheese" and when no one else spoke up, I told him to put provolone on it, like a real cheese steak. The roll was terribly soft, like what Blimpie or another company in the south used--this company was from Memphis but the founder was from Philly.
I don't eat many of them, simply because they're so bad for you. In fact, I love beef but I don't eat much meat really. I'd rather have fish any day, though. If they can make a cheese steak with chicken, how about fish? I thought that using chicken was sacrilege but whatever. It's done. Give me fish!