The past month has kept me pretty busy and because of that, I've neglected this blog. But I'm back with a recipe to share!
Growing up, French dips were my favorite sandwich. It was always a special treat when my dad took us out for lunch at the little cafe next to the repair garage that my mom and dad owned and operated. I always ordered the French dip. I loved the combination of textures, the warmth of the au jus and the act of dipping the sandwich that made the sandwich so much fun to eat. Something got me thinking of all that the other day and inspired me to come up with a vegan version of this forgotten love.
My step-dad and step-brother were working on my car yesterday and a home-cooked lunch seemed like the perfect thank you for their help. My mom helped me with the shopping and in the kitchen while the guys did their thing outside. Mushrooms were the obvious stand-in for the traditional roast beef, but the au jus took a little more thought. I wanted a mushroom broth, but the store we went to didn't carry any. I ended up getting a creamy portobello mushroom soup (Imagine brand) and it worked well enough. I realized today that one of those Not Beef bouillons would have been great, but there's always next time. Going beyond the traditional recipe, I spread some aioli on the rolls and melted some mozzarella (vegan for me, everyone else had the real stuff) over the mushrooms just before serving.
The sandwiches turned out great. My omni family loved them, even my veggie-suspicious step-brother and my step-dad insisted that I make them again. We made up a simple salad to accompany the sandwiches and we all left the table satisfied. This ones a keeper!
(All measurements approximate)
4 T Vegenaise
3 cloves garlic, minced
1/2 - 1 t lemon juice
salt and pepper to taste
combine all ingredients in a small bowl and whisk together until smooth. Add salt and pepper to taste. This has a very strong garlic flavor, adjust if needed.
Mushroom Dip Sandwiches
1 1/2 lbs mushrooms, sliced (I used 1 lb cremini and 1/2 lb portobello)
1 recipe aioli
4 oz. vegan mozzarella (I like Follow Your Heart)
4 French rolls (this is a great use for any leftover baguette!)
1 t olive oil
4 C your choice of broth for dipping, heated
salt and pepper to taste
Heat a large pan and coat in olive oil. Add mushrooms and saute until just brown. If using portobellos, grill slices (George Foreman or panini grill) until tender, about 8 minutes. If using fresh French rolls, slice them open and put them under the broiler until just brown while mushrooms cook - don't leave them in too long! To assemble the sandwiches, spread aioli on the rolls, divide mushrooms among rolls and top with mozzarella slices (top and bottom). Return rolls to broiler until cheese starts to bubble and brown (yes, FYH mozzarella will do that!). Portion broth into individual warmed bowls and serve alongside the sandwiches.