Leftovers: Venison Philly Cheesesteaks

Making a giant venison roast, delicious as it is, leads to just one problem–leftovers.  With just Dave and I in the house, we get a little tired of the same thing everyday, but we also don’t want to waste food.  So we have to be creative with making something new out of leftovers. Living in Philadelphia, we sometimes get a craving for cheesesteaks.  Lately we have been taste testing the local neighborhood joints to determine “the best cheesesteak in Philly”.  What makes a good cheesesteak?  Everyone has their differing opinions, but my idea of a good cheese steak is chopped steak, provolone cheese and fried sweet onions and occasionally I’ll take peppers.  I like the cheese chopped into the steak, not just placed on top or bottom.  But the ultimate factor for whether or not a cheesesteak is good, is in the roll.  There is only one roll that can make a good cheesesteak and that is one from Amoroso’s Bakery.  It has a perfect buttery crust, it is soft inside, not too chewy or doughy. With cheesesteaks on the mind, I thought that would be the perfect way to use up some of the roast.  Dave had recently bought some Amoroso’s rolls and I had recently bought provolone cheese, so we didn’t even have to go to the store.  I have heard that the only/original/best way to prepare a roll for a cheesesteak is to steam them, but I have also just seen them pressed onto the griddle, toasted.  I decided to consult Joy of Cooking to see what it has to say, not that I trust a cookbook originating from the Midwest to tell me the best way to make an authentic Philly cheesesteak, but I know the authors do their research.  Joy suggests wrapping the rolls individually in tin foil and place them in the oven preheated to 350°F. Sounds good to me!

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For the steak I chopped up the roast and threw it in a pan with its own drippings. In another pan I fried some onion and peppers in olive oil until tender. When the roast started sizzling in the pan, I dropped in pieces of provolone cheese and started chopping it into the meat so it all melted together. I pulled the rolls out of the oven and unwrapped them. They felt perfectly crisp and when I opened them to fill with the meat, I could tell the rolls were going to be perfect. I topped everything off with peppers and onions and voila! Lunch is served!

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I think the perfect Philly cheesesteak is now served at my house!

Philly Style Cheesesteaks made with Leftover Roast

Chopped leftover venison or beef roast (about 6-8oz) with 2 tbls of drippings (or butter/olive oil)
1-2 green bell pepper chopped or sliced thin
1 small sweet onion chopped or sliced thin
1-2 tbls butter or olive oil
Salt and ground black pepper to taste
Splash of hot sauce to taste
2 Amoroso’s rolls (or hoagie/sub roll of your liking/availability)
4-6 slices of provolone cheese torn into small pieces (or 1 Cup shredded)

Slice and wrap rolls in tin foil and place in oven at 350°F while preparing the rest of the sandwich. In one frying pan add roast and drippings over medium heat. If you don’t have drippings, use butter or olive oil. Add salt, ground black pepper and hot sauce to taste. Once the meat starts to sizzle add the cheese and stir until melted. In another frying pan sauté the onions and green peppers in butter or olive oil until tender and slightly browned. Remove the rolls from the oven, unwrap and fill with the meat & cheese mixture. Top with onions and green peppers and garnish with ketchup if desired. Enjoy!

Makes 2 Servings

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