Thursday, September 2, 2010

Homemade Sloppy Joes

Now THAT'S a combination you can't beat. 

Neither my husband nor I are huge Sloppy Joe fans. But I have come to realize that it's because we've never had really good Sloppy Joes. THESE are really good Sloppy Joes. I'm so glad I stumbled upon it over at Ezra Pound Cake. They are meaty and full of flavor and texture and...interest. :) Garlic, tomatoes, onions, chili pepper flakes, and Worcestershire. The perfect combination of heat and tang, sweet and spicy. I hope you enjoy these as much as we did!  

Note: I cut the recipe in half and found we had enough for 3 larger sandwiches or 4 small ones. But that's just us. :) I'm assuming leftovers will just get better.

::Kevin likes his overflowing to the point of forcing him to eat with a knife and fork::
whatever floats your boat.

Serves 4-6
for the hamburger base:
2 tablespoons vegetable oil
1/2 medium onion, chopped finely
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 cloves garlic, minced
2 teaspoons chili powder
1 pound ground sirloin
Freshly ground black pepper, to taste

for tomato sauce:
1 15-ounce can tomato sauce
1/4 cup water
1/4 cup dark brown sugar
1 to 2 tablespoons red wine vinegar
1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
1 tablespoon yellow mustard
1 to 2 teaspoons crushed red pepper flakes
2 tablespoons tomato paste
Salt and Pepper to taste
4 hamburger buns
Butter, for spreading on hamburger buns

A piece of advice Rebecca offers (which I neglected to follow) is to make the tomato sauce ahead of time, refrigerate at least an hour, and allow the flavors to meld together yielding even tastier results. 

In a large skillet, heat the oil to medium-high. Add onion and salt, lower heat to medium, and saut√© until the onion is soft and translucent, about 5 minutes. Add garlic and chili powder, and cook for about 30 seconds. Add beef, and cook for about 5 minutes, breaking it up as you stir. 

In the meantime, grab a medium bowl, and combine the tomato sauce, water, brown sugar, red wine vinegar, Worcestershire sauce, yellow mustard and red pepper flakes. Add the tomato mixture to the beef. Stir in the tomato paste. Simmer for at least 10 minutes, or until the mixture reaches your desired consistency. (If it seems a little “wet,” just keep simmering or add small amounts of tomato paste.)

To make your sandwiches that much more delicious, toast hamburger buns. Warm a skillet over medium heat. Butter the insides of the buns, and place them butter-side down in the skillet. Toast.

Taste the Sloppy Joe mixture, and adjust the seasonings. Sandwich the mixture in the hamburger buns, and serve.

Adapted from Rebecca Crumb's recipe at

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