When I turned 21, I went on a weekend trip to Philly. There is something really satisfying about a cheesy steak smothered in onions and presented in warm and crusty bread- especially if you’re hungover. My father made sure when I boarded that Chinatown bus to Philly that I made sure to go to the “real” Cheese steak place: Geno’s. For those that don’t know, if there is one topic of conversation that drives Locals nuts is the debate over who makes the best Cheese Steak. Geno’s. Pats’s. Jim’s. The bottom line is, they are all served on bread, the meat is still cheap and thin, the onions are greasy and you have the option of pouring all the delicious cheez whiz on top.
I was an obedient daughter and went with Dad’s recommendation of Geno’s. I was hungover and remember the cheese steak being everything. And some years later when they opened a Carl’s steaks near my office, my 21 year old self was excited. And that greasy cheese steak destroyed me. Maybe because I wasnt drunk? Or maybe, I am getting old and I can’t handle the finer things in life like a greasy cheese steak.
Grown-Up Philly Cheese Steaks (serves 2-4)
1 Large Spasnish Onion, thinly sliced
1 cup white mushrooms (optional)
2 sandwich steaks
salt and pepper to taste
4 slices provolone Cheese
4 whole wheat hot dog buns
In a large skillet, heat a tablespoon of butter and add the onions (and mushrooms if you are using). Cook over a medium heat for about 10 minutes. They should be almost caramelized. Set aside.
Sprinkle the steak with salt and pepper according to your preferences. In a separate pan, or on a george foreman grill, cook the steaks. They are thin so they should only cook for a minute or two on a high flame. When steaks are cooked, set aside and allow meat to rest.
Lightly toast the hot dog buns.
Thinly slice the steak and place in the toasted hero. Add onions and mushrooms on top. Then add the cheese. To melt the cheese, a quick trip in the oven for 1-2 minutes at 400 should do the trick… or a 30 second spin in the microwave.
I served BR and I two philly cheese steaks each since the hot dog rolls looked small. My eyes were larger than my stomach. 1 will suffice, esp with a side of oven baked tater tots!Not the fanciest dinner, but satisfies the craving.
And best of all, no upset tummies!