The Philly Classic Gets The Pressure Cooker Treatment
I think I watch too much television. Case in point: yet another recipe based on something I saw on a TV show. In this case it was the winner of Adam Richman’s Best Sandwich in America.
Thankfully, he did call the show The Best Sandwich In America, because I cringe whenever somebody says Sammich, and it seems to be becoming more and more prevalent. I don’t care if The Oxford English Dictionary has accepted it as a word, as reported on Serious Eats, I still hate it.
Enough of my editorial on sammich-saying, back to the matter at hand:
The sandwich that won top honors on the show was Tommy DiNic’s Roast Pork Sandwich in Philadelphia, PA. I have only been to Philly a couple times, but at the time I made sure to sample the Cheesesteaks, but I was not aware of the Roast Pork.
So, having never tasted this winning sandwich, my version is more of an homage than a replication, but it turned out tasting just as I’d imagined this sandwich would taste. The difference is I replaced the hours of roasting with the speediness of the pressure cooker.
I used five pounds of pork sirloin, since I found it for a good price, but pork shoulder would work great as well.
I made the meat ahead of time, and made the Broccoli Rabe later.
Pressure Cooker Pork and Broccolli Rabe Sandwich That May or May Not Be Like DiNic’s in Philadelphia
5 lbs. pork roast (that was just the size that my market had, you can make more or less).
1 onion, chopped
2 ribs celery, sliced
2 carrots, sliced
5 cloves garlic, crushed
1 can beer
1 cup beef broth (what I had on hand. Chicken or vegetable broth or water would work fine I’m sure)
2 tsp paprika (plus more for seasoning meat)
2 tsp rosemary (plus more for seasoning meat)
2 tsp garlic powder (plus more for seasoning meat)
2 tbs Worcestershire sauce
2 tsp liquid smoke
2 bay leaves
2 tsp red pepper flakes
2 tsp oregano
1 tsp celery seed
2 tbs apple cider vinegar
Salt and pepper to taste
Season meat (I used salt, pepper, garlic powder, paprika and rosemary)
In a little vegetable oil over high heat, brown meat on all sides in pressure cooker pot. The meat that I bought was already in pieces. If you use a large shoulder, you will probably need to cut it in several pieces depending on the size of your pot.
Remove to plate.
Reduce heat to medium
If there is a lot of fat left in the pan, drain some out. I didn’t end up with a lot of grease so just left it.
Add onions, celery and carrots. Saute for a few minutes until they start to soften.
Add garlic and saute for another minute or so.
Add a little of the beer to deglaze the pan, making sure to scrape up the tasty bits on the bottom.
Add the rest of the beer, along with the broth and all of the seasonings.
When it starts to simmer, add the meat back in.
Put the top on cooker.
When it reaches full pressure, set the timer for 45 minutes.
When time is up, let pressure release naturally.
Remove top and carefully remove meat to plate, and I mean carefully. At this point the meat will be so tender it will be falling apart when you lift it from the pot.
Pour juices through strainer and reserve.
Broccoli Rabe (your market may call this Rapini) recipe:
1 bunch Broccoli Rabe (this was enough for three huge servings, I probably could have stretched it to four servings), double if you are making a lot of sandwiches.
1 tbs. red pepper flakes
5 cloves garlic, chopped
1/2 cup broth or water (I used beef broth because it was handy)
I made the Broccoli Rabe in a second pressure cooker, but since I made the pork earlier, I could have used the same pressure cooker, so you don’t need to have two pressure cookers to make this.
Soak greens in large bowl of water to remove any sand
Roughly chop to make it easier to fit them in the pressure cooker
Put a little vegetable oil in pressure cooker, saute garlic briefly over medium heat
Add Broccoli Rabe and pepper flakes and toss with garlic
Add the broth and put the top on the pressure cooker and turn heat to high
When it reaches full pressure set timer for two minutes
When time is up, use quick release
Peppers (I used banana pepper rings, you can use any type you like, or leave out)
After the greens are cooked, bring the broth that you reserved earlier to a simmer. Although I have been known to make my own rolls, I wasn’t ambitious enough this time, so I bought some cheese steak rolls at the store.
You can toast them, but I steamed them over the broth. It made them a little soft, but pretty tasty!
Once buns are warmed, fold two slices of provolone into the roll, put cheese on bottom to reinforce the “hinge”.
Using slotted spoon or skimmer, dip meat into simmering broth for a few seconds then immediately put on roll over cheese.
Add the Rabe on top of the meat, then top with peppers.
This next part would probably be considered a travesty, but I put a little mustard on top as well.
Does it taste anything like DiNic’s? Unless I get sent on another business trip to Philadelphia, I may never know (and because I was only sent there once in thirteen years at the same job, I am not holding my breath). But I will say that I think it is in the top five sandwiches I have ever eaten (of course I am a little biased since I made it myself).
Let me know what you think, particularly if you have had the real thing!