Happy New Year! As a kid, I used to make New Year's resolutions, hoping that I'll actually stick to them until at least June. Now, I make one goal that I want to reach by the end of the new year and for 2019, I have decided to go full speed with my food blog. I am determined to put more effort into Cherry on My Sundae! So, to start off on the right foot, I'm sharing a delicious ribeye sandwich with jalapeno pesto, caramelized onions, and white cheese sauce. This sandwich was inspired by the classic Philly cheesesteak with some modifications like sweet caramelized onions, fresh arugula, and spicy jalapeno pesto. Who says a sandwich has to be boring?
Ribeye Sandwich with Jalapeno Pesto and White Cheese Sauce
- 1 jalapeno
- 2 cups fresh basil
- 1 clove garlic
- ¼ cup pine nuts toasted
- ½ cup parmesan grated
- 1 cup olive oil
- salt and pepper
- 1 onion peeled, thinly sliced
- 1 tablespoon oil
- 1 teaspoon salt
- ½ lb boneless rib eye steaks
- 1 teaspoon garlic powder
- ½ teaspoon onion powder
- 1 teaspoon salt
- ½ teaspoon black pepper
- 1 tablespoon butter
- 2 tablespoon butter
- 3 tablespoon all-purpose flour
- 1 ¼ cup milk
- ½ teaspoon garlic powder
- 4 ounces Monterrey jack shredded
- 4 ounces white cheddar shredded
- salt and pepper
- 1 cup arugula
- 4 sandwich buns
- Prepare the jalapeno pesto. Preheat oven to 400 degrees F. Place the jalapeno on a baking sheet and roast for 10 minutes or until skin begins to blister and darken. Remove from heat and transfer jalapeno to a small bowl. Cover with plastic wrap and let sit for 10 minutes. Remove cover and carefully peel the outer skin off the jalapeno.
- Blend together roasted jalapeno with basil, garlic, toasted pine nuts, Parmesan, and olive oil. Season with salt and pepper. Set aside.
- Prepare the caramelized onion. Heat oil in a medium saute pan over medium heat. Add onions and season with salt. Continue to cook, stirring occasionally, until onions are deep brown and caramelized, about 20 minutes. Add 2-3 tablespoon water if the pan becomes too dry. Remove from heat and set aside.
- Reduce oven temperature to 275 degrees F. Place a metal wire rack on a baking tray.
- Combine seasonings for ribeye steaks in a small bowl. Season both sides of the steaks with the seasoning mixture. Place steaks on the metal wire rack and roast until the internal temperature comes to 110 degrees (depending on the thickness of steaks, this can take anywhere between 30-60 minutes). Remove steaks from the oven and let rest for 10 minutes.
- Meanwhile, prepare the cheese sauce. Melt butter in a medium saucepan over medium heat. Add flour and whisk until combined. Add milk, whisking constantly. Let the milk come to a simmer, stirring occasionally, and reduce heat to low. Add garlic powder and half of the Monterrey jack and white cheddar cheese. Stir until the cheese melts and add the remaining amount. Stir until melted and the sauce is smooth about 5 minutes. Season with salt and pepper. Keep warm.
- Heat 1 tablespoon butter in a saute pan over high heat. Add steaks and sear until browned, about 1 minute. Flip and cook on the other side another minute or until browned. Remove from heat. Slice steaks across the grain.
- Assemble sandwiches. Toast sandwich buns. Spread jalapeno pesto on the bottom bun, top with arugula, ribeye, cheese sauce, and caramelized onions. Serve immediately.
**Helpful tips and common mistakes
Whenever I make a sandwich, it's not just sliced deli turkey, lettuce, and tomato. I'll admit, there are some fancy ingredients in this ribeye sandwich with jalapeno pesto, but with all that extra effort comes a much tastier sandwich.
Let's start by making the condiments. If you're short on time, you can always make the condiments up to 2 days before. Roast the jalapeno for the pesto until the outer skin becomes blackened and transfer the pepper to a bowl, covering it with plastic wrap. The steam from the pepper will fill the bowl and help the outer skin loosen, making it easier to peel. Peel the jalapeno, discarding the seeds if you want a less spicy pesto. Blend it with the remaining ingredients, season with salt and pepper, and set aside.
Next, caramelize the onions. Since the onions take some time, you can start cooking the ribeyes while the onions brown. We're going to be using the reverse sear method for the ribeyes, my favorite way to cook steaks. I find that whenever I use the reverse sear method, the meat always comes out a perfect medium-rare.
What is the reverse sear method? Usually, to cook a thick cut of steak, you sear it in a hot pan first then finish it in the oven. The reserve sear method is exactly the opposite, starting in the oven and finishing it in the pan. By roasting the meat first, it cooks evenly throughout, making it easier to avoid over-cooking. Finish the steaks in a hot pan to give them the caramelization it needs.
How long the steaks take to cook depends on how thick the steaks are. Use a meat thermometer to help determine when they are ready. For 1 inch steaks, it will take about 30 minutes to reach 110 degrees F at 275 degrees F.
While the ribeyes are cooking, prepare the white cheese sauce. I like to combine white cheddar with Monterrey jack cheese for a little sharp with a little mild. Just like a cheddar cheese sauce for mac and cheese, this one starts with a butter and flour roux. Add the milk, whisking constantly to incorporate the roux. Then, add garlic powder and half of the cheeses. Adding the cheeses in batches helps it melt faster without clumping. I also prefer to grate my own cheese since the pre-shredded cheeses have an anti-clumping agent that can make the sauce clumpy.
Slice the ribeye steaks and assemble those sandwiches! All your hard work has paid off because you can now enjoy these ribeye sandwiches with jalapeno pesto.
I have to say, this is one darn good sandwich. It combines sweet, savory, creamy, and even a little spicy all into one bite. Very satisfying to say the least!
For more sandwich inspiration check out this double dip turkey sandwich!
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