I didn’t know how much I desperately wanted a vegan cheesesteak sandwich until I made one. I hadn’t had one before I went vegan, so I wasn’t even aware I was missing anything. Then I made one… and WOW!
Now, before we begin, connoisseurs of the original Philly Cheesesteak will no doubt label my efforts blasphemous, mere imitations of the real thing. And you know what? I’m totally okay with that. I honestly don’t know how close this is because I have never had an original one. I will tell you, however, that this one tastes nothing short of divine and that I am sure you will become, as I have, enamoured with its incredible flavours.
This vegan cheesesteak sandwich is a meat substitute dish and, as such, I have taken advantage of one of the many great products currently available. The recipe uses the Moving Mountains No Beef Strips, but you can use any similar product you like. Not into meat substitutes? There are a few alternatives you can try instead, such as braised tofu, king oyster mushrooms or even aubergine. I’d also recommend using the meltiest vegan cheese you can get your hands, it will make a difference.
This sandwich goes perfectly with my Vegan Chocolate Brownie.
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Vegan Cheesesteak Sandwich
For the Fried Onions:
1 red onion, cut into thick rings
60g plain flour
1 tsp salt
¼ tsp black pepper
1 tsp garlic granules
Enough oil for shallow frying
For the Vegan Beef Filling:
2 tsp olive oil
1 pack Moving Mountains no beef tender strips, or similar product
½ tsp smoky BBQ seasoning
¼ tsp garlic granules
2 ripe tomatoes, cut into wedges
2 tbsp soy sauce
The juice of half a lime
1 tbsp unrefined sugar
You Will Also Need:
A few slices of vegan cheese per sandwich
A handful of mixed lettuce leaves
4 slices of rustic bread
The first thing you want to do is fry the onions. Dip the onion rings in water for about 10 minutes. Add the salt, black pepper and garlic granules to the flour and mix well. Drain the onions and then add them to the flour. Shake them to coat them in the seasoned flour ( I actually put them in a tub with a lid so that I can give them a good shake without getting flour everywhere).
Heat the frying oil in a frying pan, until quite hot. Shake the excess flour off the onions and fry them for 5-7 minutes, or until they start to crisp a little. Drain them and set aside.
Now cook the sandwich filling. Clean the pan and heat the 2 tbsp olive oil. Add the vegan beef and fry for 6-8 minutes, turning often. Now add the BBQ seasoning and the garlic granules and cook for a minute more. Stir in the tomatoes and cook until slightly softened, 2-3 minutes. Now pour in the soy sauce, lime juice and sugar and give it two minutes more.
Assemble your sandwich by dividing the vegan beef filling between two slices of bread, then put on the cheese. Melt the cheese either under the grill or in the microwave, then add the onions and the mixed lettuce. Top with the other slice of bread and enjoy.