Once again my bed rest day was brightened by friendship and food. I got an email a few nights ago from my foodie co-worker (soon to be retired) John, asking if I would be interested in a sandwich day at work. John had corned an 8 pound brisket per Julia Child’s dry cure method (20 days) and used 1/2 for corned beef and then smoked the other half at 165 degrees for pastrami. Impressive for sure! I must also note that he recently took first place in a local rib cook-off.
Once I let John know that I was going to be out the entire week due to my back injury, my co-workers decided that I still needed a sandwich. Kristen and John worked together to make me a Pastrami Panini with Muenster Cheese and Wilted Cabbage – a Fine Cooking Magazine recipe that John has used before. The recipe actually calls for corned beef, but he used his pastrami instead.
Ingredients: Recipe makes 2 sandwiches
1 Cup Thinly Sliced Green Cabbage
1 Tablespoon Olive Oil
1/4 Teaspoon Table Salt
Freshly Ground Black Pepper
1 Teaspoon Yellow Mustard Seeds
2 Tablespoons Unsalted Butter – softened
4 1/2 inch-Thick Slices Rye Bread with Caraway Seeds
1 Tablespoon Grainy Mustard
12 Thin Slices (6 oz.) Pastrami
6 Thin Slices Muenster Cheese
Combine the cabbage, 1/4 cup water, the olive oil, salt, pepper, and mustard seeds in a small saucepan and heat over medium-high heat until the water comes to a boil. Turn the heat to medium-low, cover, and steam, stirring occasionally, until the cabbage is very soft and completely wilted, 10-15 minutes. Use a slotted spoon to transfer the cabbage to a bowl, leaving any excess water in the pot, and set aside.
Heat your panini sandwich press or grill pan.
Spread butter on one side of each slice of bread. Put the bread, buttered sides down, on a cutting board. Spread mustard on two of the slices. Arrange the pastrami on top of the mustard. Spread an even layer of cabbage over the pastrami. Top with cheese and remaining bread slices – buttered side up.
Put the sandwiches on the press or grill pan. Cook until they are browned and crisp – 5-8 minutes.
This toasty sandwich was very much loved by me. I’ve been grabbing snacks here and there because I can’t lift much and standing and cooking is out of the question. I’ve been living off of fruit, smoothies, pretzels, jelly bellies and yogurt.
Thank you John for your amazing sandwich creation and thank you Kristen for delivering it to me at my house. Unshowered, no make-up, PJ’s and I still got a hug. You guys really did make my day. This past week has been really rough and it’s made me realize that I really have surrounded myself with amazing friends. So many people have reached out to me and offered to help, it has been so appreciated.
O.k. enough mushy stuff… back to Million Dollar Decorators, House Hunters, The Next Food Network Star, Eat Street and all of my other TV friends that have made the time at home go by a little faster.