03 June 2006

Weekend eats: Modified Philly Cheesesteak Sammies

Some food is best eaten on the weekends. For no particular reason, really, except that it just feels right.

And some foods, if not most foods, are even better eaten on weekends at the cottage. The recipe below isn't anything ultra complicated, but a few little modifications (chipotle sauce, smoked cheese, and garlic toast, for example) make it something a bit more special.

This feast will feed four for lunch, especially if you have some veggies and dip to serve alongside the sandwiches. The key is to be organized ahead of time, to make serving the sandwiches hot (as they should be) easier.


Marinate 500-600g of thin beef steaks (rib steaks work best, but if you've got a lot of time for marinating, use as cheap a cut of beef as you wish) for as long as you can (up to 24 hours) in a Ziploc bag with:
1 tbsp Worcestshire sauce
4-5 tbsp barbeque sauce
1 tbsp chipotle tabasco (or a dash of regular tabasco)
1 tsp dried marjoram
1 clove garlic, peeled and halved

Heat the grill up good and hot. While that's happening, slice into long strips:
1 green pepper
1/2 sweet yellow or red pepper
2-3 large shallots, OR half of a red onion
Toss together in a heavy skillet over medium heat with a little olive oil, some salt, and some black pepper.

Grate some cheese -- I recommend trying Applewood Smoked Cheddar, Guinness Cheddar, or in a pinch, some Gouda. You'll want about a cup and a half of cheese. Use less if you want, but don't be too skimpy!

Slice in half LENGTHWISE, preferably without slicing completely through, one large baguette (french loaf). Brush with butter and rub with a clove of garlic sliced open (or sprinkle with a little garlic powder...really, who's going to tell on you?!).

Throw your steaks on the grill, reserving your marinade in the bag. Have your assistant pour that marinade into the pan of peppers and onions, early enough to ensure it cooks completely (4-5 minutes).

Grill the steaks for about 3 minutes, then flip over to do the other side. Cook another 3-4 minutes, depending on the thickness of the meat and your guests' preferences (ideally, aim for medium rare). At the same time, throw your baguette, cut surface downwards, onto the top rack or other side of the grill (low heat) to toast slightly.

As soon as the steaks are done, pull them and the bread off the grill. Rush them into the kitchen, and slice the steaks thinly across the grain. Toss steak and any juices in with the peppers and onions, toss a couple of times to coat. If the mix isn't very saucy, toss in a little more BBQ sauce and a splash of Worcestshire sauce. Allow to heat for a minute.

Put the steak and veggie mix on your baguette, piling it good and high. Top with the grated cheese. Slice into manageable pieces, and serve right off the cutting board.

Mmmm good. Goopy, but delicious.

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