This week I’m making the king of lunchtime snacks, the steak sandwich.

One of these is a meal in itself and contains a wonderful balance of flavours and textures making for an incredibly satisfying sandwich. It can be modified in all sorts of ways depending what you like in a sandwich, but a few basic principles should be kept the same.

Photo: James Fox

First of all, choosing the right steak is important. An expensive cut such as fillet would be wasted in a sandwich; you’re better off with something less expensive like skirt or sirloin. When cooking, make sure to follow a few key steps: season well, make sure your pan is searing hot, cook evenly on both sides and allow to rest for as long as it was in the pan. Normally I like my steak rare but cooking it for a bit longer will ensure it’s not too chewy once in the sandwich.

The bread is up to you; anything freshly baked is perfect. I went for ciabatta. Cut it in half and give the insides a few seconds on the pan to soak up the excess juice from the steak and get a nice char on the outside.

Atop the bread I added a thin layer of mayo mixed with homemade hot sauce (see an earlier instalment in this series). This gives it a nice kick.

Next, a layer of tomato relish. This consisted of red onion roughly chopped and caramelised with muscovado sugar, some quartered cherry tomatoes, a green chili and some fresh marjoram. A splash of red wine doesn’t go amiss either. Cook down with a decent glug of olive oil until you have a nice syrupy consistency.

Top that with some lettuce, then add thin slices of the steak after it’s had enough time to rest. The end result should be something very substantial and well worth the effort.

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