Posts Tagged ‘rye’

Sometimes, you find a dish that just clicks; However it works, it works for you.  This brings us, totally unsurprisingly, to what might be my favorite food of all time: The Reuben Sandwich. A few years back I wrote about my love for Reubens. But even before Cabbages & Kings was a thought in my head, I had briefly mentioned the affinity on a much shittier and somehow-less-followed blog I wrote at the time. I could literally go on and on about how much I love this sandwich, but for the sake of brevity I won’t.

What I’m really getting at is that the combination works across near-infinite formats: Pizza, Tacos, Nachos, Egg Rolls, Lasagna. If there’s a dish you can think of, I’m sure somebody has figured out a way to put corned beef, sauerkraut, swiss cheese and Russian dressing on it. Of the countless Reubens and Reuben-adjacent dishes I’ve had, I’ve never had one quite like this.


Reuben on a stick? Sign me up. As far as food-on-a-stick goes, the classic Corn Dog is pretty run of the mill. Fixing it up into a Reuben taking a bit of extra effort, but it is well worth it.

Corned beef, surprisingly, doesn’t work quite so well on a skewer. Depending on what cut you get, I find it’s either too tender to hold shape well or too tough to get a good bite off while leaving it attached. I opted for kielbasa instead. For the batter, rye and caraway are a no-brainer. Shredded swiss in the batter could work really well, but I didn’t like the way the final product looked, so I nixed it altogether. A little kraut, a little Russian (Thousand Island, only if you insist), and you’re good to go.

Reuben Corn Dogs, adapted from ChefSteps
makes 4

  • Bread Flour, 80g
  • Rye Flour, 80g
  • Granulated Sugar, 66g
  • Cornmeal, finely ground, 25g
  • Kosher Salt, 9 g
  • Caraway Seed, ground, 8g
  • Baking Powder, 3g
  • Egg, beaten, 80g (about 1.5 eggs, beat 2 then measure by weight)
  • Whole Milk, 145g
  • Kielbasa, 4 5-inch lengths
  • Russian Dressing, as needed (recipe follows)
  • Sauerkraut, as needed

Preheat frying oil to 375F.  Combine dry ingredients. Combine wet ingredients, mixing to combine. Combine wet and dry ingredients, mixing thoroughly. Transfer batter to a tall container. Pat sausage dry with a paper towel and skewer onto stick or toothpicks. Dip sausages into batter, up to 1/4 inch onto the stick. While holding the stick, fry sausages until batter begins to set, about 10 seconds. Drop into oil and continue cooking until golden brown, about 4 minutes. Transfer to a paper towel-lined plate to drain. Top with Russian dressing and sauerkraut.

Russian Dressing
makes about 3/4 cup

  • Mayonnaise, 1/2 cup
  • American Chili Sauce, 1 tablespoon
  • Parsley, minced, 1 tablespoon
  • Yellow Onion, minced, 1 teaspoon
  • Horseradish, grated, 1/2 teaspoon
  • Worcestershire Sauce, 1/4 teaspoon
  • Kosher Salt and Black Pepper, to taste

Combine all ingredients. Allow to sit overnight or at least 12 hours.


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It’s long been my dream to open a gourmet sandwich shop. If you think about it, the sandwich is really the perfect food: every food group and whatever combination of flavors your heart desires, all piled between two layers of  delicious bread. What more could you want? For the 52 Weeks of Cooking Challenge last year, I indulged myself quite a bit on the sandwich front, so this year I tried to stray further out of my comfort zone for my recipes. However, as we draw to the close of this year’s challenge, the theme of week is Kosher cuisine, so I couldn’t help but pay tribute to the great Jewish Deli culture of New York City, and the legendary Katz’s Delicatessen.

Founded in 1888 by the Iceland brothers, Willy Katz bought into the business in 1903, and his cousin Benny bought out the remaining shares in 1910 to officially form Katz’s Delicatessen. Since then, the famous deli has been cranking out Kosher-style favorites to droves of hungry New Yorkers and travelers from all over the world. As with most traditional Jewish delis, prepared foods, side dishes and pickles are common fare for most visitors, but the real draw (especially for me) are the sandwiches. Infamously jaw-breaking stacks of meat on tender homemade breads. While my favorite sandwich of all time is the classic Reuben, when it comes to delis it doesn’t get more traditional than Pastrami on Rye

pastrami on rye

The production of Pastrami is quite similar to that of Corned Beef: Beef brisket, brined and cooked until tender. However, pastrami also gets a hearty rub of black pepper and coriander, as well as spending some quality time in a smoker. So while it still maintains it’s sweet, pickly flavor, it ain’t your average brisket. My brisket was brined overnight, then rubbed down with the traditional pepper and coriander, with the addition of some sugar, salt, juniper berries and garlic. After sitting in the smoker for an hour, I sous vide the brisket for 48 hours to make it ultra tender and sliceable. But what good would the pastrami be without its rye? Like I said before, I’ve always wanted to open a sandwich shop and baking bread was the thing that first got me into cooking. Luckily, I have some great bread books to work off of. I used a recipe from Artisan Breads at Home, published by the Culinary Institute of America, with the addition of some caraway seeds. With a nice slather of bright, yellow mustard, the sandwich was complete! And while I’ve never actually had the original from Katz’s, this dish instantly brought me back to the first time I visited NYC with friends from school, wandering around in the cold and eating from every nook and cranny store we could find.

For the pastrami recipe, visit ChefSteps.com. They’re super nerdy and science-y, and they’re totally awesome.

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