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Cugine Corner - The Johnny Meatballs Blog

Johnny’s Italian Style Cheesesteaks

Johnny Meatballs DeCarlo (January 17, 2012)

A Great Gameday Meal


Today, I’m gonna share a recipe for cheesesteaks, an absolutely perfect meal for the football games.

Now, these are not “Philly Cheesesteaks” which generally have grilled onions and sautéed peppers and melted cheese…this is a little bit different, these are “Italian Style” with broccoli rabe, sautéed mushrooms and provolone.


You can use ribeye of course, but the steak I am using here is called “lean sirloin tip beef steak.” It is sliced super thin but it is far better than “Steak-Umms” or other frozen varieties. They are low in fat so they really don’t shrink down at all in the pan. I get it at a specialty store from the Landis Company out northeastern, PA. This is a favorite brand for Philly Cheesesteaks, but as I said, I’m changing things up a bit. No Cheese Whiz will be used here. And no long roll either, I’m using panella—which is baked Italian slice bread that we’re gonna toast up with a garlic butter.


First, dice up some broccoli rabe and give it a quick blanch in a pot of chicken stock to remove the bitterness. When I make broccoli rabe I usually keep it pretty long but in this case, you wanna dice it up well, almost like chopped spinach. Remember, this is going on toast. Slice up some white button mushrooms (you can also use baby portabellas here) and toss them into a pan with a little bit of butter until they get soft. Toss the blanched broccoli rabe into the same pan after a few minutes and mix everything all together. Add in a few cloves of minced garlic.


In the meantime, mix some butter, olive oil, salt, pepper and spices of choice together and brush it onto a few slices of panella bread. I love Calandra’s brand—the medium sized loaf. Toast them in the oven until crispy.


Remove the mushroom and broccoli rabe from the pan and then drizzle in a little of the garlic butter oil and place in the steaks. You should hear a sizzle! After a few minutes, flip them over and then cover them with extra sharp provolone cheese. These cook fast, so don’t leave the kitchen! Ok, time to assemble your sengweech…


Grab the toast and place down a layer of the broccoli rabe and mushrooms, followed by the meat and cheese and then top with some more broccoli rabe and mushrooms. Close with the other half of the bread and you are ready to mangia! This goes great with a bowl of iceberg and bleu cheese or some steak fries. So make this “gameday meal” while you root on your favorite team—hopefully you’re a Giants fan!

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