Philadelphia Cheese Steak Sandwich

Who knew it could be so easy to make a Philadelphia Cheese Steak Sandwich at home? I always thought it was too complicated until J found this scrumptious recipe. The hardest part was slicing the meat!

Ingredients:
2 tablespoons olive oil
2 medium onions, sliced as thin as possible and rings separated (we didn’t keep them in rings)
1/2 cup sliced mushrooms (canned is fine! We used the little can)
2 green peppers, sliced
12 ounces chipped steak (very thin-sliced eye of round, ribeye, or sirloin tip roast cut into 1-inch slices) We used boneless ribeye.
Salt and coarsely-ground black pepper
Provolone cheese slices
4 hoagie rolls (we got them from the bakery section of our favorite grocer)
Dill pickle spears (side)
Peperoncini (side)

Directions:
In a large frying pan over high heat, add olive oil and heat so that a drop of water will sizzle when you drop it in the oil; lower heat to medium. Add onions and mushrooms, stir and cook until mushrooms darken and onions start to look transparent. Add steak slices and cook for approximately 3 minutes or until meat is lightly browned.

Add salt and pepper to taste.  Slice bread lengthwise. Using a spatula, scoop 1/4 the meat mixture on to the bread. Top with 2 slices of Provolone cheese for each sandwich. Put in a warm oven on low broil. Monitor the sandwiches.

When the cheese is melted into the sandwich and the bread is starting to brown, remove from the oven.

My opinion:
So good. So filling. Next time we’ll caramelize the onions a little longer and toast the hoagies before adding the filling.

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Chinese Pepper Steak

Our culinary tour through Asia continues with this dish. Easy enough for a weeknight meal, there was more than enough left for lunch the next day.

Ingredients:
1 lb Flank steak diagonally cut (we used flat iron steak because the local grocery was out of flank)
For the marinade:
1/4 cup Soy sauce
2 tablespoons Dry sherry
1 teaspoon Sugar
2 teaspoon Cornstarch
1/4 cup Water
2 tablespoons Vegetable oil
4 Garlic cloves, chopped
2 teaspoons Ginger root peeled, grated (we used a little more)
2 Scallions chopped
2 tablespoons Vegetable oil
1 large Onion, cut into squares
2 Green peppers, cut into squares (we used a red one we had on hand and needed to eat)

Directions:
Marinate steak for at least 15 minutes, longer is better.  Add oil to hot wok. Stir  fry garlic, ginger and scallions for 30 seconds. With a slotted spoon to reserve the marinade, remove half of the meat and stir fry for 3 minutes.  Remove and set aside. Repeat with remaining steak. In the same wok, add oil and stir fry the onion and green peppers for 2 minutes.  Push vegetables to sides of wok.  Add marinade to center of wok and stir until thickened and bubbly. Blend in  vegetables, add steak and heat thoroughly (about 5 minutes).

My opinion:
The right blend of savory and sweet, this dish is lovely with a side of jasmine rice.

Modified from this recipe on Big Oven.

Homemade Pasta Sauce

Last week J and I challenged ourselves to not go grocery shopping and use up the items in our pantry, freezer and fridge. That experiment led to some pretty creative meals. One of the best was our homemade pasta sauce.

Ingredients:
small can pasta sauce (plain, no seasoning)
tomato paste
can whole or crushed tomatoes (you can also use fresh! 2 cups of fresh equals about 14.5 ounces chopped tomatoes. When we use fresh we don’t peel, but you may want to!)
Italian seasoning (we used oregano, basil, marjoram, sage and white pepper. You can use whatever you like!)
Burgundy wine
garlic

Directions:
Combine everything in one saucepan. Bring to a boil. Turn down heat to medium low or low. Let simmer for about an hour. This will cook down.

My opinion:
This was wonderful! Easy and filling. We actually originally used too much Italian seasoning, but by adding the wine and a can of tomato sauce, everything blended very well. In the future, we’ll add onions and maybe some green peppers to add variety as well as some red pepper flakes.

This week’s food posts are brought to you by #cookchat. My co-moderator, Matt LaCasse and I are announcing #cookchat’s triumphant return on Thursday January 20, a noon. CST. Join us for an hour of food filled conversation.

Easy Weeknight Enchiladas


UPDATE: We made this again using homemade hot Enchilada sauce, whole wheat tortillas (they hold the sauce better and don’t fall apart as easily), onion and garlic powder (we were out of fresh). The homemade hot Enchilada sauce recipe is: 1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce, 1 (8 ounce) can tomato sauce, 1 teaspoon paprika, 1 teaspoon oregano, 2 teaspoons chili powder, 1/2 teaspoon cumin and 1/2 teaspoon black pepper. These additions made all the difference in the world! The Enchiladas were spicy and delicious! I can’t wait to make this again!

This super easy recipe made enough for us to freeze half for another meal.

Ingredients:
10 flour (or corn) tortillas
Enchilada sauce (or make your own, we weren’t that adventurous, yet!)
8 ounces Mexican blend cheese
1 pound ground beef (you could also use chicken)
oil to coat pan

Directions:
Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Heat the oil in the pan. Brown the ground beef. Drain. In a mixing bowl add all but about a cup of the cheese, ground beef and half of the Enchilada sauce. Mix. Spoon mixture onto tortillas. Roll and place in a greased (or lightly oiled) 8 inch pan. Once all the tortillas are in the pan, pour the remaining sauce over the Enchiladas. Sprinkle with remaining cheese. Put in oven and cook for about 12-15 minutes.

My opinion:
Next time we will make our own sauce or at least add green chilies for more flavor. While good, this dish was a little bland for our tastes. We’ll also add onions and green peppers to the beef and cook it a little longer in the oven, we only cooked them for 12 minutes. All in all, we would make this again.

Reminder: #cookchat returns on Thursday January 20, a 8 p.m. CST. Join Matt LaCasse and I for an hour of food filled conversation.