In the world of sandwiches, there are classics, and then there are classics that truly stand the test of time. Among the latter, the French Dip sandwich reigns supreme.
With its mouthwatering combination of tender, thinly sliced roast beef nestled inside a soft baguette, and a savory au jus for dipping, it's no wonder that French Dip sandwiches have captured the hearts and taste buds of food lovers around the globe.
In this blog post, we're diving into the world of French Dip sandwiches and exploring just why they are so irresistibly delicious and their versatility.
The story of the French Dip sandwich is as flavorful as the dish itself. While there is some debate about its origin, one popular legend attributes its creation to Philippe Mathieu, a French immigrant who opened the now-famous Philippe The Original restaurant in Los Angeles in 1908. According to the story, a happy accident occurred when a sandwich roll accidentally fell into a pan of drippings from a roasting beef, leading to the creation of the iconic French Dip.
Eating a French Dip sandwich is a sensory journey like no other. The first bite reveals the tender beef, its juices mingling with the au jus-soaked bread. The combination of flavors and textures is nothing short of heavenly. As you continue to dip and savor, each bite feels like a delicious adventure, with the au jus enhancing the meat's richness and the bread's softness.
The beauty of French Dip sandwiches lies in their adaptability. While the classic version is a time-tested favorite, culinary innovators have found ways to put their own spin on this beloved sandwich. Some use different cuts of meat like lamb or turkey, while others experiment with diverse types of bread or creative dipping sauces.
Below, you will find one of our favorite twists on this beloved classic that utilizes one of our favorite methods of cooking; fire!
You will need heavy duty foil for this recipe.
- 1/2 cup (8 tablespoons) unsalted butter, softened to room temperature
- 1 package au jus gravy mix, separated
- 1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
- 3/4 teaspoon dried minced garlic
- 1/2 teaspoon onion powder
- 1 long/large (or 2 smaller) baguettes
- 1 pound deli roast beef (ask for rare, since it's getting cooked)
- 1 package pre-sliced (12 slices total) provolone cheese
Preheat a grill to medium-high heat (400 degrees) or the oven to 400 degrees F.
Start by making the butter mixture. Combine the softened (not melted) butter, 1 tablespoon of the au jus gravy mix, Worcestershire sauce, dried minced garlic, and onion powder in a bowl. Stir until ingredients are completely combined and set aside.
Cut the baguette into equal parts of about 6-10 inches in length. Next, make an ODD number of thin slices (approx. 1/2 inch wide) into each piece of the baguette, cutting only about 3/4 the way through. It's important there are an ODD number of slices so that each sandwich has 2 pieces of bread.
Separate the butter mixture created in step 2 into 2 equal parts. Using a butter knife, spread a small amount of the mixture inside each slice of bread. Save half of the mixture for later.
Slice the individual pieces of cheese in half and place 1 piece, along with 1 piece of roast beef, in-between every two "slices" of bread. (Again, these will be individual pull-apart sandwiches, so you don't want cheese and meat in-between each slice).
Take the other half of the butter mixture and brush it along the tops and sides of each of the sandwiches with a pastry brush.
Wrap each baguette section completely in foil. Make sure none of the bread is exposed.
Place in the preheated oven for 10 minutes or the preheated grill for 6-9 minutes (turning frequently) or until bread is toasty and cheese is melted. If you have a thicker baguette it will take longer.
While the sandwiches are cooking, prepare the au jus. Take the remaining au jus mixture and place in a small saucepan over medium heat. Add 2 cups cold water and whisk. Bring to a boil and then reduce the heat to a simmer to allow it to slightly thicken. (You can do this on the side burner of a grill or even over a campfire OR make ahead of you bring these sandwiches camping)
Remove foil packs and open carefully to let the steam escape. Pull apart the sandwiches and enjoy with the au jus sauce.
RECIPE COURTESY OF CHELSEA'S MESSY APRON