We are moving on to meal number 3 of our budget friendly, brisket bulk cooking series! Today we are going to take just 2 cups of that brisket and make some tasty, Chicago style hot beef sandwiches, complete with provolone cheese, giardiniera and delicious au jus pile high on a homemade Italian roll!
If you are not familiar with traditional Chicago hot beef sandwiches. Allow me to introduce you! A typical, hot beef is made from either thinly sliced ribeye roast or bottom or top round beef roast that has been slow cooked to perfection. In some cases, ribeye is sliced thin while raw and still partially frozen then cooked, per order in simmering jus. Then they take a hard Italian roll, and dip it as requested in the broth then pile the sandwich high with beef, onions, peppers, cheese and giardiniera which is a spicy pickled vegetable medley consisting mainly of cauliflower as well as carrots, sweet red peppers, celery, pearl onions and banana peppers.
The sandwich can tend to be messy and if you choose to have it served “wet” you will get your bread almost completely soaked in that delicious juice. You have a choice when ordering a hot beef sandwich. You can get it dry, light medium or dunked in the broth. I am somewhere in the middle. Rick says he is the same, however I have seen him make his sandwich in a pasta bowl and ladle the juice over the whole thing needing a fork to eat it. Any way you choose, is going to be a distinct regional treat for you.
My hot beef is using up some of the delicious, slow roasted brisket we made. I have used two cups here and it was enough for four generous sandwiches. The addition of the onions and peppers along with the pickled veggies makes for a whole and hearty meal. Eat it with your hands or with a fork, either way enjoy!
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A little history on the Chicago Hot Beef or Italian Beef sandwich according goes like this:
An Italian beef is a sandwich of thin slices of seasoned roast beef, dripping with meat juices, on a dense, long Italian-style roll, which originated in Chicago where its history dates back at least to the 1930s. The bread itself is often dipped (or double-dipped) into the juices the meat is cooked in, and the sandwich is typically topped off with Chicago-style giardiniera (called “hot”) or sauteed, green Italian sweet peppers (called “sweet”).
Italian beef sandwiches can be found at most hot dog stands and small Italian-American restaurants in northeastern Illinois, southeast Wisconsin (notably Kenosha), Northwest Indiana and Indianapolis. However, Chicago expatriates have opened restaurants across the country serving Italian beef, Chicago-style hot dogs, and other foods original to the Chicago area.
The exact origin is unknown, but many believe it was created by Italian immigrants who worked for Chicago’s old Union Stock Yards in the early 1900s. They often would bring home some of the tougher, less desirable cuts of beef sold by the company. To make the meat more palatable, it was slow-roasted to make it more tender, then slow-simmered in a spicy broth for flavor. Both the roasting and the broth used Italian-style spices and herbs. The meat was then thinly sliced across the grain and stuffed into fresh Italian bread.
According to Scala’s Original Beef and Sausage Company (formed in 1925), this meal was originally introduced at weddings and banquets where the meat was sliced thinly so there would be enough to feed all the guests. It rapidly grew in popularity and eventually became one of Chicago’s most famous ethnic foods: the original Italian beef sandwich.
I hope you have enjoyed our bulk cooking brisket journey! We have more to come and I think we may just get a total of 6 meals out of this brisket!
I hope you found this how-to helpful and I hope you give a Chicago hot beef sandwich a try and I hope you love it!
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