This hearty sandwich is worthy of Super Bowl, but great anytime

Entertaining

Sourdough bread, beef, Gruyere and slaw suit occasion

Entertaining

January 19, 2003|By Betty Rosbottom | Betty Rosbottom,Special to the Sun

Much to my surprise and his, my thirtysomething son has turned out to be a talented cook. In fact, when he and his wife entertain, it is usually Michael who plans and executes the menus. He loves having friends over and often organizes his social life around sporting events. A passionate football fan, he looks forward every year to the Super Bowl, when he invites a small group to his house to watch the game and to enjoy a homemade meal.

Knowing that he keeps the menus for his bowl parties simple, I couldn't resist sending him a new sandwich recipe that I recently created. Called Beef in the Round, the sandwiches are a meal in themselves and ideal to serve for a casual gathering. They are made with rounds of sourdough bread, which are scooped out, then layered with sliced Gruyere cheese, thin apple wedges and sliced roast beef. Finally, the meat and cheese are topped with a piquant red cabbage slaw mixture.

These tall, hearty sandwiches are cut into wedges for serving and need no more than a bowl of potato chips and deli-style kosher pickles as garnishes. The sandwiches can be assembled an hour ahead so that there is no last-minute work. And, although the following recipe makes two big loaves and yields eight servings, you could easily increase the ingredients for a larger gathering.

You don't need a Super Bowl game as an excuse to enjoy these delicious sandwiches. They would be ideal offered for lunch on a weekend when you have overnight guests, or you could serve them after an outing to the movies or a basketball game for a light supper with friends.

Distributed by Tribune Media Services International.

Beef in the Round Sandwiches

Makes 8 servings

One 6-ounce jar prepared horseradish, drained well

1/2 cup regular or reduced-fat (not nonfat) sour cream

1/4 cup regular or reduced-fat (not nonfat) mayonnaise

2 teaspoons country grainy Dijon mustard

6 tablespoons chopped dill pickle

1/4 teaspoon salt

1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

2 cups chopped red cabbage

two 6- to 8-inch round crusty sourdough breads

1 medium Granny Smith apple

2 teaspoons fresh lemon juice

3/4 pound thinly sliced Gruyere cheese

1 pound thinly sliced rare roast beef

In nonreactive mixing bowl, stir together horseradish, sour cream, mayonnaise, mustard, pickle, salt and pepper until well blended. Add cabbage and stir to combine. Set aside at cool room temperature for 30 minutes. (This slaw mixture can be prepared 2 hours ahead. Cover and refrigerate.)

Slice each loaf of bread in half, crosswise, through the center into 2 rounds. With your hands, gently pull out most of soft bread from the center of each half, leaving a 1/2 -inch-thick shell.

Halve apple lengthwise and core. Cut each half into very thin slices and toss in lemon juice.

On one of the bottom bread halves, use half of the cheese to make a layer, then half of the apples to make another layer, and half of the roast beef. Use half of the cabbage mixture to cover the roast beef, then cover with top round.

Repeat to make another sandwich. (Sandwiches can be prepared 1 hour ahead. Wrap in plastic wrap and leave at cool room temperature.)

To serve, place sandwiches on cutting board. Using serrated knife, cut each into 4 wedges. Arrange on serving platter.

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