I don’t have a special story to go with this recipe. I’m not even sure why we call them sandwich steaks, because I’ve never actually eaten them in a sandwich (though I bet that would be amazing!). I vaguely remember my Grandma once referring to them as Pepper Steak, but I can’t be completely sure she was actually referring to this recipe.
At the end of the day, it’s all about keeping it simple. Just taking a couple basic ingredients and combining them in a way that creates the most amazing flavors!
In truth, I haven’t always had the best of luck with these. Don’t get me wrong, the flavor is consistently on point and incredibly delicious. I used to have a hard time believing you could get so much flavor from so few ingredients! You’ want to let these simmer for a while and keep reducing the juices to build that flavor. My grandma used to have them done in an hour and they were falling apart tender. Every time I make them, they simply are not tender enough at that one hour mark so I let them go a little longer. They’re still delicious even when they’re not falling apart, but its that incredible tender texture that really takes them over the top.
I bet these would be excellent in the slow cooker after browning everything- I may actually try that someday. But for today, give yourself a bit of extra time (the first 10 minutes are really the only labor-intensive part). My mom has also been known to make these with garlic and bell papers instead of onions (maybe that is where this Pepper Steak memory is coming from, though I can’t remember ever tasting it prepared that way. I’m sure it would be delicious though.)
Source: Rosie Scuteri
- 1.5 lbs of thinly sliced steaks
- 1 small onion, thinly sliced
- Olive oil
- Salt and pepper
Heat your oil over medium/medium high heat and add your onions. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Sweat your onions for a couple minutes until they soften- you don’t want them to brown, just to soften. Remove from the pan and set aside.
While the onions are sweating, dry and season both sides of your steaks with salt and pepper. If they’re too big, cut them down a bit (keep in mind that they shrink, mine usually start around 3″ – 4″ inches each way). Once the pan is free brown the steaks on each side. Make sure you only do a few at a time because if you have too many in the pan at once they will steam and not brown. As each group of steak browns on each side pull them out of the pan and keep them to the side with the onions.
Once all steaks are browned on each side, add everything back into the pan. Cover with water and bring to a boil. Once boiling reduce the heat so that the meat simmers. Let this simmer and reduce for about an hour, maybe a bit more, or until they are tender and almost falling apart. The onions will almost have disintegrated and you’ll have a sauce that is perfect for dipping bread into.
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