A few weeks ago, Sara and I were in Harrisburg, Pennsylvania for a speaking event. It was our last trip of the spring and my last trip before I have my baby, so I think we both felt a little more relaxed and like it was easier to enjoy ourselves and the city we were visiting.
Our first night there, we walked down the street to The Fire House Restaurant and I ordered a steak sandwich with garlic aioli and brie. It was like the marriage of so many of my favorite things–I’m pretty sure I would have steak for my last meal if I got any say in it, you guys know how much I love garlic, and brie and I have a scandalous, unspeakable history. It is an addictive, naughty cheese that I can’t be in the same room with and still expected to act like a lady.
I was expecting a sliced steak sandwich (like a Philly Cheesesteak), but the steak was a whole steak. And it was one of the most tender, delicious, melt-in-your-mouth steaks I’d ever eaten. However, because I know how tricky that can be (especially for something like a sandwich where even a tiny bit of toughness can make the whole sandwich-eating process a whole lot less pleasant), when I re-made this sandwich at home, I decided to slice the steak. I didn’t do it in the food processor like I do for Cheesesteak Sandwiches, but I sliced a really nice, high-quality top sirloin into 1/4″ slices.
I’d recommend using a lean cut like sirloin or a tenderloin; I tried it with a ribeye the first time because the grocery store was out of sirloin AND tenderloin and it cooked up too fatty for my taste, kind of like beefy bacon. Which, believe me, was not the worst thing in the world, but when combined with the brie and aioli, it was too much.
Heat a skillet over medium heat. Add some butter and, when it’s melted and bubbly, add the sliced steak and season it with kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper. Cook, flipping once or twice, until the steak is cooked how you like it (I cooked mine until it was just cooked through–it was still tender that way, but I wasn’t worrying about that infinitely long list of things that pregnant women aren’t supposed to eat). Remove the pan from heat.
Slice some high-quality sandwich rolls in half. Spread the bottom half with Garlic & Caper Aioli.
Turn the broiler on your oven to the highest setting and place the open-faced sandwiches under the broiler for 3-5 minutes (watch them carefully!) or until the aioli side is toasting and the brie is melting. Remove from the oven. Use a knife to spread the brie on the top half of the sandwich.
Sliced Steak and Brie Sandwich
Recipe by Our Best Bites, inspired by The Fire House Restaurant
1 lb. lean steak, like top sirloin or tenderloin
1-1 1/2 tablespoon(s) butter
Freshly ground black pepper
4 high-quality sandwich rolls
1/4 cup Garlic & Caper Aioli
About 4 ounces brie cheese
4 crisp lettuce leaves (like Romaine or red leaf lettuc)
Red or yellow onion slices
Using a sharp knife, carefully slice the steak into 1/4″ slices.
Heat a skillet over medium heat. Add butter. When the butter is melted and bubbly, add the sliced steak, sprinkle with kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper, and cook until the desired doneness is reached (I cook mine until it’s just cooked through but still tender.) Remove the pan from heat.
Turn the broiler of your oven onto high heat. Slice the sandwich rolls in half and spread the bottom half of each roll with 1 tablespoon of aioli per sandwich. Slice the brie into 1/4″ slices and place on the top half of each roll (it’s okay to leave the rind on the cheese). Place the sandwiches open-faced onto a pan and place the pan under the broiler for 3-5 minutes (don’t walk away! Keep an eye on things!) or until the aioli side is lightly toasted and the brie is beginning to melt. Remove from the oven and gently spread the melted brie with a butter knife.
Top each bottom half with a leaf of lettuce and then divide the steak evenly on top of the lettuce leaves. Top the steak with slices of tomato and onion and then place the sandwich roll tops on each sandwich. Serve immediately. Makes 4 large sandwiches.