Catering & Event Director, Craig Kohut of Long Beach, California-based Bravo Productions was asked how to make a great sandwich. Kohut, a culinary wizard with more than two decades of experience in the food & beverage industry, including owning a restaurant, working with some of California's best chefs -- and his passion and flair for creating exquisite cuisine, recommended the following:
Well, first you can't reinvent the wheel; however there are a few ways of making the perfect sandwich that people just can’t seem to agree on. Pumpernickel or Rye? Russian or Thousand Island dressing? Two layers of kraut or 1? Frying pan or Panini press?
"I prefer rye with Russian dressing," says Kohut. The dill pickle on the side makes up for the lack of pickle you would have in Thousand Island dressing. The sauerkraut needs to be squeezed, allowing all the juice to come out. If you don’t, you will have a soggy sandwich. The kraut also should be warm.
Mix a little Russian dressing into it, but not too much! Butter the bread and toast in a frying pan on medium-low heat. You want your bread toasty. Cheese should be melted on each slice, 1 side Gruyere; 1 side Swiss. The two cheeses make a difference. Once the cheese is nearly melted, put the hot corned beef (if needed cook sliced beef a little in frying pan) on one side and the kraut on top. Add more Russian dressing if you like. Pile as high as you want -- and remember -- you're taking the chance of making a huge mess if you’re trying to build a skyscraper. You can make another if you’re still hungry. Put the other slice of bread on top, press down with spatula like a Panini press, but not too hard. Take the sandwich off the skillet and place on a cutting board. Cut the sandwich in half with a big chef’s knife.
Serve on top of a paper napkin so the hot bread does not sweat. For Russian dressing, coleslaw dressing and soup recipes as side dishes, see below.
1 large onion chopped
2 stalks celery chopped
2 carrots peeled and chopped
3-4 pound corned beef
You can buy corn beef ready to cook with seasonings and all at any grocery store. You will find some great deals after Saint Patrick's Day. In a large pot with heavy lid, add meat, seasoning package (if desired) and vegetables and cold water to cover by 2 inches. Bring to a boil. Cover and bring to a simmer for minimum 3 hours (or until tender) or after you cover you can put it in a pre-heated oven at 275 degrees for 5 hours. If you have a Crockpot or any slow cooker, you can use that as well on low for 8 hours.
1 cup mayo
¼ cup ketchup
2 tablespoons minced onion
2 tablespoons prepared horseradish
1 tablespoon hot sauce (red devil or trappeys)
1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
½ teaspoon sweet paprika
Fine sea salt
Whisk all ingredients completely
Classic Coleslaw Dressing:
2/3 cup mayonnaise
1/4 cup minced onion
3 tablespoons minced dill pickle
2 tablespoons pickle brine
4 tablespoons distilled white vinegar
2 tablespoon prepared white horseradish
1 tablespoon sugar
1 teaspoon kosher salt
1/2 teaspoon celery seeds
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
Whisk all ingredients in a medium bowl to blend. DO AHEAD: Can be
made 1 day ahead. Keep chilled.
3 tablespoons butter
3 cups chopped leeks (about 3 large)
2 potatoes peeled and finely chopped
4 teaspoons fresh thyme chopped
8 cups broccoli
3 cups chicken broth
1 cup heavy whipping cream
Ground white pepper
Melt butter in large pot over medium heat. Add chopped leeks and finely chopped potato and sauté till tender and soft (10-12 minutes), but do not brown. In another large pot, boil broccoli florets in salted water about 5 minutes and drain. Combine 2 cups broth (saving 1 for end if needed) and 1 cup cream to large pot and bring to slow boil. Add the broccoli florets and everything from the other pan (leeks, potato, and thyme). Cook for a few minutes, making sure everything is soft enough and ready for the food processor. In batches, puree entire contents of pot until you have a rich creamy soup. Return to pot and heat on medium. If your soup is too thick, add some chicken stock or reduce by simmering if you want it thicker. Add salt and white pepper to taste.
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