Neighbors

Isn’t it amazing how great neighbors can make all the difference?

Not only can I depend on them for great conversation over the fence, help snow-blowing the driveway, great cupcakes or the comfort in the knowledge that they would call the fire department should they see smoke, but recently… dinner. And not just any dinner. Home-smoked sausage and kielbasa, with sautéed peppers, and rolls to put it all on!  All packaged and waiting for me after a long day at work!

neighbor dinner

Notice they even put up the flag on the box to alert us of our “special mail!”

My husband and I immediately assembled a sandwich and gobbled it down, forgetting to take another photo of the sandwich itself. But trust me, it was a looker!

THANK YOU GREAT NEIGHBORS!!

Be My Valentine

Some folks get flowers. Some get chocolates. Some just a card. Or maybe just something unexpected  - a dreaded task done for them around the house or maybe a nice dinner.

For me – it was a sandwich.

My husband knows the way to my heart is through my stomach and the best sandwich for me always involves beef and tomatoes! Of course it being February in New England – the tomatoes are fairly pathetic but any tomato is better than no tomato in my book.

Broiled Steaktips with tomatoes, spicy pepperoncini rings and crumbled feta

Broiled Steaktips with tomatoes, spicy pepperoncini rings and crumbled feta

For anybody following along…you might remember the last time I posted a love story about a very similar sandwich!

ok now you can bring on the chocolate……

The Sausage “Gal”

If you are ever in Boston and happened to catch a Red Sox game than of course you would have enjoyed a delicious sausage sandwich from The Sausage Guy! (well maybe not this year :()

For anybody who may be unaware of this delicacy (gasp!) – this is an Italian style sausage (hot or sweet) grilled “low and slow” with sliced peppers and onions, served on a soft Italian roll. Purists tend to not put on any condiments, but yellow mustard is acceptable. Anything else and you are clearly from out-of-town.

Sausage was a favorite of my father’s and I inherited the love for “encased meat.” I am sure my future cholesterol levels will reflect this someday but for now I will enjoy it while I still can.

Such an easy thing to recreate in your own kitchen, in fact even easier on the grill! Plus I “stepped” out a bit and actually put a little “char” on the peppers – they are usually cooked on a flat-top or pan.

I happened to use yellow/green bell peppers, but red and green are a bit more traditional. A little time directly on the grill and then into the pan with the onions to finish cooking.

Nothing brings the neighbors (and your husband) out of the house faster than recreating the smell of Yawkey Way!

So next time the game is on, fire up your grill and get the sausages on. Be sure to toast the rolls and personally I like a little cheese on mine…you know the kind that melts really well – nothing fancy.

And now the “beauty shot!”

A Love Story

My story begins with a Ciabatta roll. Still warm from the local bakery.

Next a judicious amount of “submarine sandwich dressing” on both sides of the roll.

I like to put the delicious house-made roast beef from McKinnon’s against the dressed roll, so the spices and oil can blend with the meat.

Next up: Picante Provolone cheese. (I never skimp on the cheese!)

Shredded iceberg lettuce is the only way in my book. Take the time and you will be glad you made the effort. It allows the juices to circulate through the sandwich instead of acting as a shield!

Thinly sliced green bell peppers just really amp up the fresh flavor.

And of course the tomato. I have a problem I know, I am addicted to them.

For a little spicy, vinegar kick – my sandwich would not be complete without some Pepperoncini. If you have never had these little beauties than are not living right!

A little salt and pepper completes this affair for me. “Hey Sandwich King, eat your heart out!”

Now if you don’t mind I need to be alone with my lover.

It Only Takes A Little…

…steak to make a satisfying sandwich. A little inspiration from your own crisper drawer. And the best of all, a little early season oregano surprising you in the herb pot in the backyard!

Really, it all started with the tomato, green bell-pepper and some little cukes in the crisper drawer that were leftover from last week’s lunch fixings. All that just instantly screamed Greek salad at me. Which of course started a craving for feta cheese. (When don’t I crave any kind of cheese!) So the other night, I  strolled the meat department looking for the perfect sandwich meat and came upon a tiny (.68lbs) sirloin steak. For just a few bucks (3 to be exact) I could have a nice hearty Greek salad with steak on a sandwich. Now if only I had remembered to buy a red onion while I was at the store….

The Technique

I cut the little steak into small cubes (1/2″ or so) and marinated them in a little olive oil, red wine vinegar and plenty of oregano for a few hours. I got the fancy v-slicer out and sliced all the veggies really thin, except the tomato. I cubed the feta. I sprinkled long rolls with olive oil, broiled them until hot and then rubbed them liberally with a cut garlic clove while they were piping hot. After carefully drying the marinated cubes and discarding the marinade, I pan sautéed the steak cubes over a med-high heat to sear them. (They cooked in like 3 mins.) I piled all the items on the rolls and drizzled a freshly made mixture of the same olive oil, red wine vinegar, fresh chopped oregano and some salt/pepper over the top.

If I may say so myself, these were damn good sandwiches. Hearty, fresh and honestly I could have portioned out 3 servings. So it just proves that you don’t have to have a ton of expensive, diet-busting steak on your plate to feel satisfied.

Special thanks to the hubby for stopping off on the way home for that red onion.

Freezer Clean Out

Lately I have been using up the forgotten items from the freezer. After all, I gotta make space for this year’s harvest!

So the other night I when I spotted a lonely, tiny container of homemade pesto from last year’s Basil…I knew just what to do with it.

What would you do ?