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~South African Steak, Stilton & Peppadew Mayo Subs~

IMG_3815The addictive Peppadew pepper is one of my favorite things.  I first encountered them at a cocktail party at a friend and neighbor's home a few years ago.  Everyone was asked to bring an appetizer.  A couple who hailed from South Africa brought a plate of antipasto.  I asked if the peppers were hot.  The answer, which came to me complete with a lovely South African-British accent, was "it'twill be a pleasant, sweet-heat".  That, is how I fell in love with the Peppadew.

IMG_3767Peppadew is a brand name for a small, pickled red pepper, resemblant of a grape-tomato, known as Juanita.  The Juanita plant was discovered in 1993 by Johannes Steenkamp, who found it growing in the garden of his vacation home in the Eastern Cape of South Africa.  A taste of the pepper revealed a spicy, sweet-heat flavor profile.  Johan wasted no time.  In order to protect the species, plant breeder's rights were applied for and granted by the South African Department of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries, and, in 1995, he founded Peppadew International and the Peppadew Brand.  Johan cultivated and processed the peppers (pickling them in a simple sugar and vinegar mixture to enhance their spicy flavor) in the Tzaneen region (where the factory is still headquartered today). He was the first to market this type of pepper to the world -- which resulted in the Peppadew brand being the foremost singularly-associated with this piquanté pepper.  Steenkamp sold his interest in the company in 2004, and they now market a wide variety of other food products too.

IMG_3770For the steak sandwiches:

1  2-2 1/2-pound flank steak, seasoned, broiled, rested and sliced as per the instructions for Melanie's Perfectly-Cooked 18-Minute Flank Steak recipe

4  6"-6 1/2" submarine/hoagie rolls

2  cups baby arugula leaves

For the blue cheese sandwich-spread:

1  cup blue Stilton cheese crumbles, or your favorite blue cheese crumbles

1/4 cup blue cheese dressing

1/4-1/2 cup additional blue Stilton cheese crumbles, for topping sandwiches

For the Peppadew mayonnaise-topper:

1  cup Peppadew peppers, well-drained

1/4  cup mayonnaise

IMG_3774 IMG_3774 IMG_3839~ Step 1.  Season, broil, rest and thin-slice the flank steak according to my instructions, or, if you prefer, grill a flank steak to rare- medium-rare.  These sandwiches are best served with same-day broiled (or grilled), slightly-warm or room temperature steak, meaning:  steak that has not been refrigerated (aka leftovers).

IMG_3797 IMG_3797 IMG_3797~ Step 2. In a small-capacity food processor, place the blue cheese crumbles and blue cheese dressing. Starting with a series of 30-45 on-off pulses, then with motor running on high speed, process until a thick, semi-chunky consistency is reached*, about 25-30 more seconds. Transfer to a 1-cup food storage container and set aside. Wash the processor work bowl and prepare the Peppadew mayo.

* Note:  Beauty is in the eye of the beholder.  I see this spread as a lovely blue-green color.  You many not, BUT, be aware, there is no other way to achieve an amped-up, flavor-packed blue-cheesy spread (which this indeed is) without using lots of blue-veined cheese -- hence the color.

IMG_3779 IMG_3779 IMG_3779 IMG_3779 IMG_3779 IMG_3779 IMG_3779~Step 3.  Measure and drain 1 cup of Peppadews on a paper-towel-lined plate.  In a small-capacity food processor, place the Peppadew peppers.  Using a series of 30-45 rapid on-off-pulses, mince the peppers.  Add the mayonnaise.  With motor running on high, process until smooth and drizzly, 25-30 seconds.

IMG_3805 IMG_3805 IMG_3805 IMG_3825~Step 4.  To assemble sandwiches, use a serrated knife to slice each roll in half.  Using a spoon, slather a generous coating of the blue cheese spread over the inside of the roll on both sides. Add a goodly amount of arugula leaves, then stuff in as much steak as it will take.  Sprinkle blue cheese crumbles over the top, followed by a drizzle of the Peppadew mayo and serve ASAP.

Blue cheese spread, rare steak & the sweet-heat of Peppadew:

IMG_3823It just might be the best steak-combo sub ever.  Open wide:

IMG_3836South African Steak, Stilton and Peppadew Subs:  Recipe yields 4, 6"-6 1/2" sub sandwiches.

Special Equipment List: 11 3/4" x 8 1/2" x 1 1/4" disposable aluminum broiler pan w/corrugated bottom; cutting board; chef's knife; 1-cup measuring container; paper towels; small capacity food processor; rubber spatula; serrated bread knife

6a0120a8551282970b01b7c8981422970bCook's Note: Chef Paul Prudhomme is credited for helping to put New Orleans cuisine on the map.  ~ Chef Paul's Blackened Flank Steak Sandwiches ~ are another example of a scrumptious steak sandwich. Seasoned with Chef Paul Prudhomme's store-bought blackened steak magic, and paired with blue cheese and bacon, take it from me, the Peppadew pepper is a great topper to these family-favorite, crowd-pleasing sandwiches too.

"We are all in this food world together." ~ Melanie Preschutti

(Recipe, Commentary and Photos courtesy of Melanie's Kitchen/Copyright 2019)


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