It’s Super Bowl Sunday again. I saw Valerie Bertinelli make Italian Beef sandwiches on TV last week and decided that that’s what I wanted to do for our Super Bowl Sunday lunch. She made her sandwiches with a giardiniera aioli but I don’t particularly care for giardiniera. At least not the ones I’ve tried so far. I do think these sandwiches would be great with a garlic aioli though.
One thing she did do was serve her sandwiches with coleslaw and that was definitely the way to go as far as I’m concerned. Delicious! The coleslaw added a sweet crunch to the tender, savory beef that made it the perfect well-rounded meal.
ITALIAN BEEF SANDWICHES WITH COLESLAW
Make Italian Beef the Night Before:
4 lbs. boneless beef chuck or rump roast, cut into large chunks
2 red bell peppers, seeded and sliced
1 small onion, halved and thinly sliced
1 can (15 ozs.) diced tomatoes, undrained
1 packet Italian salad dressing mix
3 cloves garlic, minced
2 tsp. Italian seasoning
2 tsp. salt
½ tsp. pepper
Combine all ingredients together in slow cooker.
Cook on low setting for 10-14 hours.
Skim some of the excess fat from the surface using a ladle or cooking spoon.
Shred the beef coarsely with two forks.
4 loaves (12-14 inches each) Italian or French bread
Italian Beef, warm or at room temperature
coleslaw, ready-made or make your own (recipe here)
Cut each loaf of bread into 4 to 6-inch lengths depending on how big you want your sandwiches.
Split each sandwich in half lengthwise and toast lightly.
Fill sandwiches with the shredded beef.
Top beef with coleslaw.
NOTE: Serve sliced pepperoncinis on the side for those who might want them.
You can also top the beef with a slice of mozzarella or provolone cheese before piling on the coleslaw, if desired.
A friend of mine told me that she read somewhere that the way to keep your coleslaw salad from becoming runny and water-logged is to toss your shredded cabbage in a colander with 1/2 cup sugar and 1/4 cup salt, and let it sit for about 5 minutes. This is supposed to draw the excess moisture out of the cabbage. Then you give it a really good rinse under cold running water and spin it in a salad spinner to dry well. The cabbage stays nice and crisp and the salad doesn’t end up swimming in a bowl of soupy dressing.
Sounds totally plausible, doesn’t it? So I decided to give it the old college try. Well, all I can say is…….. don’t go off and start doing something else so you forget about your cabbage and it ends up sitting in the sugar/salt mix for about 40 minutes instead of the 5 it was supposed to…….. not unless you want to end up with a colander of limp, shrunken, gray-green little strings. Yikes! Anyway, if someone else out there tries it and it works, you’ll have to tell me all about it. Then maybe I’ll try it again. For now, I’m sticking to making coleslaw the old-fashioned way.
½ head green cabbage, sliced thin
½ head red cabbage, sliced thin
2 medium carrots, peeled and julienned
1 cup mayonnaise
3 Tbsp. cider vinegar
3 Tbsp. sugar
1 tsp. celery salt
½ tsp. pepper
2-3 green onions, chopped (optional)
Place shredded cabbage and carrots into a salad bowl. If you’re short on time, you can substitute 2 (16-oz.) bags pre-shredded coleslaw mix.
Whisk remaining ingredients together in another bowl.
Pour dressing over the cabbage, tossing to combine well.
Refrigerate for at least 30 minutes before serving.
NOTE: If you don’t like red cabbage, you can omit it and use one whole head of green cabbage instead. Also, if you don’t have celery salt, you could substitute 1 tsp. salt plus ½ tsp. celery seeds in its place.