Here I go again with another recipe designed to cure a craving for a food that I can’t seem to find outside of the Chicago area. There, Italian beefs were easily accessible at almost every pizza or hot dog place. You can search high and low outside of that area and never find one. Finding a good Chicago style hot dog is also another challenge.
These are nowhere near an original Italian Beef that can easily be found in that area. Those are made with beef roasts cooked to rare in a flavorful broth, then sliced into thin perfection pieces of meat. The meat is dipped back into that wonderful broth and slapped onto a sturdy Gonnella roll (which are unfortunately only available in and around the Chicago area grocery stores).
I’ve tried recipes that called for rare beef, thin sliced and simmered in broth, but I could never get a kitchen slicer or knife to recreate that perfect tenderness of the original beef in Chicago. So now I used the shredded beef method. It turns out more like an Italian “flavored” shredded beef in a spicy au jus. I prefer to serve these with hard rolls, Kaiser rolls, or any sturdier roll, but soft sub rolls will do in a pinch.
Preheat oven to 350°.
Trim roast of any visible silver skin, gristle, and large pieces of fat. Cut small slits all over the meat and insert garlic slivers.
Place roast in a roasting pan that has a fitted lid.
Cover with oregano, sprinkle with red pepper flakes, and pour condensed consommé over the top. Add the bouillon or beef base into the liquid. Add water if necessary to bring liquid up to the top of the roast.
Place lid on pan, or tightly cover with aluminum foil. Place in preheated oven and slow roast for 3 to 4 hours or until meat is easily shredded with 2 forks.
Remove meat from liquid and shred. Place meat back into broth and reheat over low heat if necessary.
Use tongs to place meat on sliced hard rolls. Serve with pepperoncini . Add broth to individual small bowls for dipping sandwiches.
This recipe can be made in a slow cooker. Cook on high for 5 – 6 hours or low for 8 – 12 hours.
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