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Nov 7, 2011 04:46 AM

Techniques to get an authentic philly cheesesteak at home

DH is hosting friends to watch the game in a few weeks and we thought these might be a welcome change from the usual fare.
How do you get the thin, juicy strips of meat be tender. What cut of beef should I be looking for?

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  1. Authentic cheesesteaks are made from thinly sliced ribeye; freeze the meat for a half hour to get it sliced thin enough, or have the butcher do it. On a griddle or very large skillet, cook the onions and mushrooms until caramelized, then slide them to one side and cook the meat on the same griddle. Cook the sliced steak until medium; not more, but not less. Use sliced American cheese or provolone once the meat is cooked; scoop the cheese-covered steak into good rolls, top with the mushrooms and onions.

    3 Replies
    1. re: PSZaas

      What they said……..

      I make them a couple times per month. We use the shaved steak (ribeye) sliced nice and thin. I cook onions, peppers and shrooms first, then pull them, add in the steak along with S&P and make sure nothing clumps together…..nothing worse than taking one bite and having 50% of the meat come sliding out. Once the steak is a good medium or so, I mix the onions, peppers and shrooms back in, I split the whole thing in two portions and then top with American cheese slices. I also toast my bread a little as I like a little crunch to my bread but soft in the middle.

      Carefully scoop the portions into the long rolls and enjoy……

      The whole cheese-whiz fascination is bogus to me. I don’t care what they do at Genos, Pat’s etc. I’m sure ti is good, but they also serve Provolone etc. and that is always my choice.

      1. re: River19

        While Geno's and Pat's are duly considered to suck, the true authentic is ribeye, onions, and whiz no American, no provolone, no sauce, no peppers and no mushrooms. All can be added but not the 'real' item. Good typical Philly bread helps a lot as well.

        1. re: Delucacheesemonger

          We're not launching the space shuttle here.....steak, onions, cheese,. bread.....add the other stuff if you like......use real cheese if you like, heck use velveeta if it blows your hair back.

          I think it's all up to personal tastes, it's not like the sandwich police arrest you for doing it your way.

          I think the OP should try some variations and settle on what they like.....the jouney will taste good as well.

    2. I think the OP can figure out how to make a really, really simple sandwich. Use ribeye. Add whatever toppings you want. The first response said it all.
      Don't go down the rabbit hole that virtually always forms when anyone asks about cheesesteaks. It turns into a Pat's, Geno's cluster-you-know-what and you get sucked into this vortex where too many opinions about "who's the best" and "what's authentic" deflects from your original question.
      It's steak and cheese on bread for heaven's sake. If you want whiz use it. If you want provolone use it. Onions? Pepper? Sure, why not.
      I use marinara on mine and my brother dips his in ketchup. So what, who cares?
      BTW, this advice is from a Philadelphian .
      Enjoy, and remember folks, KISS (keep it simple, stupid).

      1. You can find thin-sliced ribeye in the freezer section of most Asian Markets. It is used for bulgogi and negimaki and is much better than the Steak-Ums of the world.

        IMO the bread is the key. Get sturdy whole rolls and slice them yourself. You should try to cut a "canoe" opening in the top of the roll and pull out enough of the insides to give you plenty of room to pack the ingredients but not have anything falling out of the bottom of the roll.

        3 Replies
        1. re: CDouglas

          Great tip on Asian markets. I'll look for rib eye in the freezer section at my H Mart. I've been surprisingly satisfied with Steak Eze (frozen sirloin) that I get from Costco.

          1. re: monavano

            I use the frozen stuff from Costco too, though I don't think it was Steak Eze brand, it's something else (just threw the empty box out). In a pinch, i've even used it in bibimbap when I didn't have any of the good stuff on hand from HMart (shhh).

            I make cheesesteaks in my trustly cast-iron skillet, like previous posters. Cook the onions and peppers first, maybe shrooms too, then the meat. When the meat is starting to get crispy bits I give it a good shake of Lawry's seasoned salt (that's my big secret), add back the veggies, separate into portions and then lay on slices of white American. The meat gets more little crispy bits while the cheese is melting.

            My hubby is from the Philadelphia area and eats these happily. He also says that the bread is what he misses most about real Philly cheesesteaks.

            1. re: gimlis1mum

              Lawry's? I'm intrigued! Will try next time.
              The bread is the sticky wicket with these sandwiches, but I too am happy with what I can do at home with what I can get where I am.
              It hits the spot because what passes around here for a PCS generally misses the mark greatly.
              I am rather fortunate to be able to get a decent hoagie though.

        2. I've tried the boxed sliced meat before and it's not the same as fresh meat. I will have to look for it shaved or ask my butcher if they'll shave it. Alternately, I will slice as thin as I can once it's been frozen.
          Our fave toppings: peppers, onions, shrooms and yes...provolone or asiago. Freshly ciarsely ground black pepper is a must!