Italian Beef Sandwiches
Today I would like to tell you about a fabulous little recipe for these fabulous little enormous sandwiches. Seriously, they’re huge. I ate just a fourth of one once and I was relatively set. Not only that, but they really are tasty. You have the slight spice and deep flavor of the beef, the salty juice, the sweet caramelized onions, the crunch of the pepperoncinos, the sweet roasted red peppers, and the soft doughy roll. Not bad for just a few hours in a crockpot (or in the Dutch oven on your stove, which was my method of choice).
I’m not including this meal in a weekly menu, because it is a little pricier to make. Grand total on this one is around $25. We did get four large meals out it, which helps justify the cost a bit more.
For seasoning, 3-4 hours before cooking:
2 lbs. beef round (go cheap!)
2 tsp. each basil, oregano, and parsley
1/2 tbs. salt
1/2 tsp. pepper
1 1/2 tsp. crushed red pepper flakes
5 cloves garlic, minced
1/4 cup olive oil
3 yellow onions
1/2 tablespoon crushed red pepper flakes
7 cloves garlic
1 15 oz can tomato sauce
1/2 cup red wine
1 cup beef stock, reduced-sodium
2 tbs. Worcestershire sauce
2 bay leaf
1 jar pepperoncinos (about 1 1/2 cups)
1/2 jar roasted red peppers (about 3 peppers)
4 hoagie rolls
Rub all side of meat with spices and garlic, then cover and refrigerate for about 3 hours. To simplify this process, I mixed all the seasonings and garlic into a prep bowl before I even touched the meat. Then, I didn’t have to worry about using dirty hands to shake out seasonings.
When you are ready to cook dinner, heat crock pot or Dutch oven over medium heat, then add oil and garlic, then add onions. Allow to saute for 15 minutes, until onions are lightly caramelized, then degalze with wine. Add the Worcestershire sauce, beef stock, and bay leaves. Place meat in and allow to brown, covered, on each side, 3-5 minutes per side. Once browned on all sides, cover the pot and allow to cook over low heat for 3 hours. If you go with a cheapie cut of meat like me, then you want to cook it low and slow for maximum tenderizering! Don’t be tempted to turn up the heat and shorten the cooking time; the meat will be tougher. A meat thermometer should register 135 degrees in the middle of the meat when it is done. Remove meat from pot and allow to rest for 20 minutes, then slice very thinly.
While meat rests, toast rolls under the broiler and slice all pepperoncinis and roasted red peppers. Top rolls with meat, onions, broth, pepperoncinis, and peppers. Be ready to eat fast, as these get soggy from the juice. If you want to limit their sogginess, you could dish up the broth in bowls on the side. You could also only make half of the sandwich at a time to keep the other half fresh until you’re ready to eat it.