Collaboration is a fine thing

March 14, 2010

Child C and I have cooked. She is proud of herself. I am proud of her debut as sous chef.

Child C, building the Arkansas version of Philly cheesesteak sandwiches. She was proud.

I’ve got to work on her knife skills, though. I was convinced we were going to have some extra protein in the onion.

The finished product, however, was worth the effort:

Yum. And furthermore, yum.

These are so simple as to be ridiculous, and so cheap as to be an excuse for going out for ice cream, and so easy as to be a go-to for a weeknight that you don’t have much time to cook.

It’s also relatively easy to expand the recipe to feed a crowd, without much expansion in effort required. If you felt led to do so, you could’ve added some sides like baked beans, potatos or slaw. I did not feel so led tonight. Plus, I’ve got to break the new sous chef in easy.

To make sandwiches for four regular appetites, or two sizeable ones, you will need:

  • a pound of tenderized round steak, variously also known as cube steak or minute steak
  • one medium onion, sliced
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • a little olive oil
  • about 2 tbsp. Worcestershire sauce
  • 8 slices provolone cheese (we like cheese at my house)
  • a baguette, or a long loaf of Italian bread

Slice, or dice, your onion. (I cut , or had Child C cut, the thing in half and slice thin.) Peel and mince your garlic. Now, the next step is critical.  You know how tenderized round steak has those little tracks running one direction across it, where they’ve run it through the little tenderizer machine that has actually cut hundreds of tiny little slits in the meat? You want to slice ACROSS that artificial grain. This is what makes your steak sandwich manageable and not tough.

Saute your onion in a little olive oil until it starts to caramelize. Throw in the garlic. When it starts smelling garlicky, add the steak strips. Cook over medium high until there’s no pink showing. Cut heat back to medium low, add Worcestershire, cover and simmer until all the liquid is gone (maybe 15 minutes).

While it’s simmering, slice the baguette in half and line both sides with provolone slices. Toast until cheese is melty and has a brown spot or two. Pile meat onto bread, top with other half, smush down and enjoy.

You can add whatever condiments you wish. I like horseradish sauce on mine. Child C opted for mayo. There’s also no need to limit oneself to Worcestershire…I can conceive of any number of excellent potential sauces. How about tomato paste, a little cider vinegar,brown sugar,  a little chili powder? Barbecue sauce?  Pad Thai sauce?

I attempted stirring with the Big Green Arm.

Ain't it lovely?

Not a really easy thing to do. Although I have taken an emery board to it a few times this weekend to get rid of some of the more egregious uncomfortable spots. And it’s useful for whacking the dog on the head. Looks like I’ll be availing myself of sous chef assistance for the next few weeks.

Got laundry to finish. You and y’mama ‘n ’em spring your clocks forward, if you didn’t last night, and go to bed early.

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One Response to “Collaboration is a fine thing”

  1. Kate Dickson Says:

    Way to go, Sara! I’m looking forward to trying some of your offerings…


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