Wednesday, October 28, 2009

The Tailgate: Nuclear Bomb Steak Sandwich

Are all sandwiches created equal? The existence of Vegemite suggests that the answer is a resounding, and disgusting, no.

Vegemite: Proving the mental illness of the entire country of Australia

The sandwich is a staple of lunches everywhere, from the PB&J in the Ghostbusters lunchbox of a child (or socially inept comic book store employee) to the corned beef sandwich at your local Irish pub. The varieties of sandwiches around the world are endless. Different meats, bread, cheeses, veggies and condiments (bacon is both a meat and a condiment) allow sandwich explorers to roam to whatever combination soothes the savage glutton. Clearly, some are much better than others. Which raises the question of how to rank them.

Made with love by a bar cook with a knife scar on his face

I am not here to tell you the perfect stack - merely to offer some help in judging. The sandwich which all others should be judged by, the tasty combo that has graced us for years (its probably in your child’s lunch box today) is the bologna and cheese on white bread. It’s simple, tasty and readily available. It's both a classic standby and the unemployed bastard's last defense against starvation (because Ramen noodles suck).

My favorite version however uses hand sliced bologna seasoned with a quality barbecue dry. You grill it, then before taking it off the grill add sliced Hoop cheddar. When it's all melted and delicious, serve it on toast with yellow mustard, barbecue and hot sauces (Texas Pete’s hot sauce works well).

Something like this, except not snagged off of Google Images in real life

Although this is one of my favorite sandwiches, it is not the world's best. Only Sandwich Nazis declare absolutes. There's always something better and more fattening around the corner. Another slightly more sophisticated interpretation of the above-described bologna sandwich follows, but use your imagination. Some say the sky is the limit. I disagree - the other piece of bread is the limit. Unless you're some open-faced eating crackpot.

Nuclear Steak Bomb

The elegant plating and dinner napkin placement suggests this may not be a Man B Que-taken picture. Hell, the existence of a napkin at all in it is pretty conclusive evidence.

1 sirloin steak
1 bell pepper sliced
1/4 onion sliced
1 can croissant dough
1 jar mushroom gravy
Worcestershire sauce
Olive oil
Salt and pepper

1. Season and grill your steak to your desired doneness. Simplicity works best with the seasoning - Worcestershire sauce, olive oil, salt and black pepper.

2. Heat a skillet over medium, then add gravy, bell peppers, and onions

3. When steak is finished resting, slice across the grain of the meat into bite-sized pieces.

4. Put steak chunks into skillet until gravy is thick.

5. Roll out croissant dough, making sure no seams break. Pour gravy steak mix into the center of the dough. Wrap dough around the mixture and bake following the instructions from the can.

Who said a croissant couldn't be manly?

- Dirt Man

1 comment:

Dirt Dad said...

The original bologna sandwich is hard to beat. Further suggestions:

1) Never buy bologna that is pre-sliced and comes from a national brand name. Down here look for Starling or King Cotton. The delicate, hand carved slabs are needed for character.

2) Dirt Man's exposure to the bologna sandwich started at Shaw's store in Buckner, KY. You were offered your meat of choice with "round" cheese or "square" cheese. Round was the cheddar, and square was American. (There are times when American aka "processed" cheese is appropriate, but that's a whole 'nother article on the Dirt Man essential food ingredients.) Shaw's and any place farmers gather for bologna sandwiches should be the yardstick by which all sandwiches are measured.

3) Hey! Don't trash the napkin folding. And plating is still worth 10 points to the Iron Chef. Ole Dirt can do frou-frou with the best of them.

4) Where'd you get that Vegemite thing? Your mamma and 'em and your daddy and 'em never heard of such stuff....

--Dirt Dad