Friday, March 6, 2009

Foodie Friday: Philly Cheese Steak Sandwiches

I have not yet done my major grocery shopping for the month, which means it is time to rely on whatever is left in the cupboards, fridge, and freezer. I happened to find a forgotten package of stew meat in the freezer the other day whose original purpose I simply could not recall. In the fridge I found the two red bell peppers that I bought last weekend because they were 10/$10. I also had my eye on some leftover brat buns. Hmm, what could I do with these ingredients?Aha! Philly Cheese Steak Sandwiches.

**Note the bite out of the left side. I forgot to take the picture before I started eating. M said that I should say it was just so good, I couldn't wait. ;o)**

I looked at a couple of recipes online, but none seemed all that special. (And you know me, I need special!) So, I just dove in.

Here is what I did:
-Defrost the meat by slowly warming it on the stove in a pan of water with 1 T vinegar added. Do not fully cook the meat, just defrost it. (I did it this way to make sure that the meat didn't get too tough. Vinegar is great for so many uses. Including as a natural tenderizer.)
-Slice the meat into thin slices.
-Marinate the meat for a few hours in olive oil, lemon juice, liquid smoke, salt and pepper. (This will also help to tenderize the meat.)
-After marinating, cook meat in large frying pan on high heat.
-While meat is cooking, chop up one medium onion and two red peppers into thin slices.
-Once meat has cooked, add the peppers and onions. Cook until vegetables are tender.
-I added some more spices to kick it up a notch. I added more salt and pepper. I added crushed red pepper flakes, and a smokey chipotle season mix that I have.
-I spooned the meat mixture onto the buns and topped with pepper jack cheese. (M, who has had a real Philly Cheese Steak Sandwich, informed me that even though I added cheese, I cannot call this a Philly With. Apparently you need just the right cheese and you cook it in with the meat and vegetables.)
-I toasted the sandwiches in our toaster oven until the cheese had melted.
These were tasty and I am looking forward to the leftovers. The meat was actually fairly tender for being freezer-burned stew meat.

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