The King of All Roast Beef Sandwiches

I just recreated the most delicious sandwich (that is, dare I say, even better than the original?!) from a fancy little deli here and I cannot wait to share this recipe with you today.

My husband works in a hospital and has a lot of catered lunches served during their meetings and usually they are nothing too amazing to write home about. They often have something like a boxed lunch from Panera with a sandwich, chips and a cookie, or maybe a chicken and broccoli  rice bowl from Flame Broiler. However, the other day they had lunch catered from a place called Mendocino Farms, which is a restaurant inside our local Whole Foods in Irvine. This is a sandwich shop that started in downtown LA and has spread to a few locations throughout Southern California the last few years. It was the best sandwich I had ever had! 

The flavors were just so insane--it is one of those things that is absolutely a party in your mouth! The sandwich is called “The Bistro Steak” and the description describes it as “carved steak with dijonnaise, basil pesto, caramelized onion jam, roasted tomatoes, arugula, lemon squeeze on toasted sesame roll”. All of the flavors just come together so beautifully and it tasted SO fresh.

Because I had this description, AKA: a list of the ingredients, I knew I had to try and recreate this sandwich in my own home so we could have it at a moment’s notice any old time. I ordered some lovely, thick-cut roast beef from the deli at Walmart, a loaf of sourdough bread, some dijon mustard and I hoped that a jar of sundried tomatoes would be every bit as delicious as the roasted tomatoes they used. (Spoiler alert: the sun dried tomatoes were way better!)

I didn’t have any caramelized onion jam, but I knew that freshly caramelized onions made in my cast iron pan would be just as heavenly. I set to work on those while I was assembling the rest of the sandwich. When I ate the original sandwich, the peppery arugula almost seemed bit wilted (by design) so I mimicked that by adding my arugula and sundried tomatoes to a little bowl, then added a big spoonful of the oil that the tomatoes were packed in, tossed to combine, and let it sit while I kept working. By mixing equal parts mayo and dijon mustard you get a fantastic “dijonaisse” and the pesto on the other side of the sandwich really brings it all together. 

After my husband and I, who are sandwich fanatics, tried this replica, it was deemed an instant success! A new family favorite--the king of all sandwiches! Such a sandwich deserves an honorable name. (You might already know from previous stories how much we love to name things around here :) ) After throwing out a few solid names, and since we have still been playing a lot of the video game, Zelda: Breath of the Wild, we decided to name this sandwich “Urbosa’s Fury”. If you don’t play or know this Zelda videogame, you’ve just got to know that Urbosa is this really fierce fighter and she’s got some wicked sweet powers to use against the scary bad guys. This sandwich seems worthy to be named after her, and I don’t take that lightly! 

The best part is, my husband took it one step further and has an acronym for Urbosa’s Fury: Ultimate Roast Beef Oh So Amazing Sandwich--URBOSA’S {Fury}. It just makes it even cooler and such a fun memory for our family with our love of delicious sandwiches and playing dorky video games together. It just doesn’t get any better than that! 

If you want to try the best roast beef sandwich ever--here is the recipe I concocted to make two sandwiches on sourdough. It’ll make you feel like the coolest, fiercest warrior ever! Have you had success replicating one of your favorite dishes from a restaurant? What was it and did it turn out as you hoped? Please share in the comments below.

Ultimate Roast Beef Sandwich

Yield: 2 sandwiches
Serving size: 2
Calories per serving: 271

4 slices sourdough bread
3-4 tablespoons butter
1 small yellow onion, sliced
1 tablespoon mayonnaise
1 tablespoon Dijon style mustard
2 tablespoons basil pesto sauce
4 ounces sliced deli roast beef, (the higher quality, the better)
1/2 cup arugula
2 tablespoons sundried tomatoes, (from a jar packed in oil)
squeeze of lemon juice (optional)

Start by making caramelized onions by heating butter in a (preferably a cast-iron) pan over medium-low heat. Add onions and stir every once in a while until onions are soft and are a deep, caramel color, about 20 minutes.

We want to wilt our argula a bit, so add your arugula to a bowl along with the sundried tomatoes. Add a spoonful of the oil the tomatoes are packed in and stir to combine. Set aside until the end of the sandwich assembly.

This recipe will make two sandwiches, so lay out your 4 slices of bread and add 1 tablespoon pesto sauce to each sandwich--1 tablespoon on one side of each sandwich. The other side will have the dijon mayonnaise. To make the dijon mayonnaise, mix the mayo and Dijon mustard together. Add 1 tablespoon to each sandwich, on the opposite side of bread. Pesto on one side--dijon mayo on the other.

Layer roast beef onto the sandwich and top with caramelized onions. Add the arugula and sundried tomatoes to the other side. Add a squeeze of fresh lemon juice over the whole thing. Combine sandwich halves and enjoy the best roast beef sandwich ever!

Recipe formatted with the Cook'n Recipe Software from DVO Enterprises.

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    Mary Richardson
    Weekly Newsletter Contributor since 2014
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