Oct 11, 2012

pat's cheese steak make over

To make the sandwich bigger,
click on the top bun.

Let's for a brief moment veer away from the casual dining restaurant and go to Philadelphia.  Pat's King of Steaks boasts of being the originator of the Philly Cheese Steak. The legend goes that Pat was selling hot dogs from his cart when, on a whim, he decided to cook up some steak meat instead. He was probably getting tired of hot dogs and wanted to eat something different for a change. 

A cabbie nearby was exposed to the succulent "aroma" and had the temerity to ask for Pat's lunch instead of a hot dog. Being the smart businessman that he was, Pat didn't have a hang up over this and, in fact, made some more for himself after the cabbie was gone. The cabbie enjoyed this steak sandwich so much that he spread the word to other cabbies who in turn spread the word and the rest is history. 

At this point Pat did not have cheese on his famous cheese steak; he added that later. 

Since I went to the trouble of making the SteaK Seitan, I decided that I needed more recipes for steak. Diners, Drive-Ins and Dives loves to show cheese steaks on the show and Tami and Celine have their own version of cheese steak in their new cookbook, Vegan Sandwiches Save the Day; I didn't want to be left behind.

Let's talk how to order this cheese steak as a local - not that you'll ever have the chance seeing as it isn't vegan, but perhaps you can get the family to play Pat's and "order" the sandwich from you.

Here is the lingo:

One sandwich with onions: "wit"
One sandwich without onions: "wit-out"
Two sandwiches with onions: "2 wit"
(you get it, right?)

specify the cheese: American, Cheese Whiz, Provolone
For the vegan version, you can have Follow (Your Heart), Teese, Daiya, or a great vegan cheese sauce. 

 Have your money ready 
(or chores for the at-home players)
So, review:
One sandwich without onions, with cheese whiz:
"wit-out whiz"

For those who want authentic, and nothing but, you will need the cheese sauce, which I have very conveniently invented for you (although, which at this point had to be removed from the site as it is appearing in my upcoming cookbook!). This is a fantastic cheese sauce, so please give it a go - it requires no Daiya, FYH, etc. I added peppers and onions to our sandwiches, along with the cheese sauce. 
Pat would be proud. 

Cost Breakdown
SteaK: $3
bread: $3
peppers, onions, mushrooms: $3
cheese sauce: $2
oil, garlic, misc: $1
Total to make 4 sandwiches:
Their charge per sandwich: $9.00
Make Over cost per sandwich: $3.00

Oct 9, 2012

bennigan's make over

Bennigan's is sort of close to my heart, as much as any casual dining restaurant can be, because I worked there. As a vegan. Not much fun, as I am sure many other vegans who have to serve body parts feel. This is another time around the Irish-wanna-be  establishment. In the first go-around I promised you a Monte Cristo recipe. I lied. I'm not going to take the time to type it up, because, frankly, it is a pretty gross sandwich. Sorry, if I have offended anyone.

The Broccoli Bites over there, however, are pretty good and I recommend them.

What is a MoFo Make over without something buffalo? I've done Buffalo Wild Wings for MoFo V and Pub Grub for MoFo IV, to satisfy the insatiable need for the buffalo spice. For MoFo VI I am recreating Bennigan's Buffalo Chicken Sandwich. Apparently they no longer have the sandwich on the menu, although they are offering it as a salad. Go figure.  

While this is basically the same thing as the other buffalo recipes, this one is just the sauce, nothing but the hot sauce, coating the seitan. No butter, no garlic, nothing else.

I tried making this with tofu, but it wasn't quite as good as with the seitan. Squeezing out the excess moisture of the seitan before frying is necessary because the crust can get soggy. Also, you can fry all the cutlets first and then bake them to re-crunchy-fy them. This used to be served with Bleu Cheese or Ranch Dressing. I went with the Ranch because that is what my kids like. Below is a quick Ranch dressing that I am finally happy with.

Cost Breakdown

breading: $1
buns: $3
sauce, Ranch: $1.50
condiments: $1
fries: $3
Total to make 4 sandwiches:

Their charge per sandwich (guessing) ~ $10.00
Make Over cost per sandwich: $2.86