I love a good french dip sandwich. They are just darn good. But if you take a french dip sandwich and give it some pizazz, that is nothing but a good situation!
My cute neighbor, Christy, gave me this recipe. Christy and I could really talk about cheese for hours. In fact, I think we have done that. She told me about this recipe while we were discussing the merits of a good Gouda. My family tried the recipe and loved it. It was delicious. Like I said, french dip with a little something extra. So it’s an italian dip sandwich. It doesn’t hurt that this is a slow cooker recipe. Which means that 1. it is easy peasy and 2. it doesn’t heat up the kitchen. It is supposed to be almost 90 today and I don’t really want to be heating up the house if I don’t have to.
So let’s do the math “french dip + pizazz + easy peasy + no oven = no brainer”
One of the beauties of a slow cooker recipe, is that you can buy a cheaper cut of beef, as long as it is boneless, and it will still turn out tender and delicious. In fact the more connective tissue the cut of beef has, the more flavorful it will be. Connective tissue is made of collagen. And when cooked for a long time, collagen becomes gelatin, which is full of flavor and adds moisture to the meat. If that collagen isn’t cooked long and slow, it doesn’t have a chance to turn to gelatin. It stays collagen and collagen is tough. Cheap cuts usually means tough cuts with lots of connective tissue. Relatively bad for stuff you grill, but really great for slow cooked or braised foods. And yes, in case you are wondering that is where jello comes from. That’s why jello isn’t a vegan food. That was your sciency portion of today’s post. Just be glad we didn’t get into terms like aponeurosis and fascia today. Maybe some other time, if you are lucky :).
This makes a great busy night meal, since it requires very little prep just prior to eating. And whether you dunk the sandwich or don’t dunk is up to you. I love dunking the sandwich. The Strongman doesn’t like making his bread soggy, so he refrains. I won’t judge you either way. Except if you are wearing socks with your flip flops while eating this meal. Then I will judge you.
Thanks for the recipe Christy!