Jackfruit Philly Cheesesteaks
When I first met Alex there wasn't a Philly Cheesteak he wouldn't eat for lunch. He LOVED them! He was a sucker for the 'traditional' - although clearly it's debatable what the traditional version is exactly. He's always considered the melted provolone slices, not the cheeze whiz sauce, the original version - and the chef in me wants to hope he's right. So when he told me he'd sort of been craving that familiar old sandwich, we knew we could make a vegan version that was just as friggin' good. And I think we nailed it on this one. The secret? The cheesier-than-ever Daiya provolone slices! They're the perfect sub for the ooey-gooey, melty cheese that makes the original so memorable. The slices melt and stretch just like real cheese, but are a delicious, plant-based alternative for anyone looking to eat better, whether they’re dairy-intolerant, allergic, vegan, or simply living a healthy lifestyle.
The jackfruit makes the perfect substitute for a shaved steak, and was super like the original once we got a little char on the jackfruit. Our best tip is to cook in cast iron if you can - you'll get nice, crispy edges on the jackfruit. Once you get the jackfruit cooked up you toss in the grilled veggies and cheese, and voila! You've got yourself a super yummy, way healthier Jackfruit Philly Cheesesteak Sub! These sandwiches are so yummy served up fresh, but can be easily wrapped in paper and taken along on a picnic. Either way, do yourself a favor and cook these up for yourself. The recipe makes enough for two, so you can make one for someone you really like or have leftovers for day two. Oh, and people usually ask - we find our jackfruit at local Asian markets, but you can usually find it, though overpriced, at Whole Foods as well. Enjoy!
Daiya vegan provolone cheese slices
1 loaf Italian bread or 2 large sub rolls, sliced
1 teaspoon coconut oil
1 medium yellow onion, thinly sliced
1 red bell pepper, thinly sliced
1 teaspoon coconut oil
2 - 20 oz. cans jackfruit, drained and shredded
1/2 cup water
1 large clove of garlic, minced
1 teaspoon liquid smoke
1 teaspoon maple syrup
1 tablespoon white cooking wine
1/2 teaspoon smoked paprika
1/2 teaspoon onion powder
1/2 teaspoon soy sauce
salt + pepper to taste
Place the Daiya slices and sub rolls to the side, you'll need them after the filling is prepared.
Heat coconut oil in a medium-sized pan over medium heat. Sauté the thinly sliced onions and peppers until softened, about 8-10 minutes. Remove from heat and set aside.
Begin heating the next bit of oil in a large skillet over medium heat. As it heats up, pour in the shredded jackfruit, water, minced garlic, liquid smoke, and maple syrup. Sauté until the liquid reduces to about half, then add the white cooking wine, smoked paprika, onion powder, soy sauce, salt and pepper. Stir to combine, and continue to cook over medium heat until the liquid has completely reduced and the jackfruit is beginning to brown.
Throw the onions and peppers into the pan with the jackfruit and toss to combine. Line the mixture into a straight line across the middle of the pan. Place Daiya provolone slices onto the mixture (we used 2 per sandwich), then cover the pan with a lid for about 30 seconds to a minute, or until the cheese has become melty on top of the jackfruit mixture.
Use a spatula to scoop the mixture onto your sub rolls and enjoy!
Leftover filling will last in the fridge, covered, for a few days.
Traditional cheesesteaks are served on soft bread, but all we could really find was a french baguette. While soft sub rolls are my recommendation, use what you can find.