I cannot remember the last time I ate a Sloppy Joe. Do you know what they are? They’re sort of a sandwich, a mixture of ground beef, tomatoes, onions, bell pepper and spices, cooked like a sauce then served on a bun. They were popular when I was growing up (are they still?) and when I was growing up was probably the last time I had one.
One day, after thinking about Sloppy Joes, I hunted in the freezer, found some ground beef and set to making some. You can buy sauce in a can to mix with ground beef, but I’m a do-it-yourself kind of person, so this is a homemade concoction.
Here what happened.
Thawed the ground beef.
Got tomatoes, red pepper, garlic and onions.
Started (and finished) chopping).
Cooked the ground beef.
While the meat was cooking, assembled the other ingredients.
Apple cider vinegar.
When the ground beef was almost browned the onions, red pepper, tomatoes and garlic were added.
After 15 minutes of cooking, added the brown sugar, mustard, celery seeds, ketchup, Worcestershire sauce, cider vinegar, cayenne pepper, tomatoes, salsa and water.
After the meat mixture has cooked for 30 minutes or so, toast the buns, load on some of the meat and serve!
Were homemade Sloppy Joes worth remaking now that I am a grown up? Yes. They were sloppy, eat-over-the-kitchen-sink type sandwiches and very tasty: savoury, tangy, meat with a bun to soak up the sauce.
Homemade Sloppy Joes
Makes enough for 4 sandwiches
1 pound ground beef
1 medium onion, diced
1 red pepper, diced
1 garlic clove, minced
1/4 cup brown sugar
1 tsp. Dijon mustard
1 tsp. celery seeds
1/4 cup ketchup
1 Tbsp. Worcestershire sauce
1 Tbsp. cider vinegar
1 tsp cayenne pepper
1 – 14 oz. can chopped tomatoes with their juice
1/2 cup water
1 cup medium salsa
Buns for serving
Brown the ground beef in a large fry pan over medium heat. When the meat is almost browned, add the onions, red pepper, tomatoes and garlic and continue to cook for 15 minutes, until the vegetables are softened. Turn the heat to simmer and add the brown sugar, mustard, celery seeds, ketchup, Worcestershire sauce, cider vinegar, cayenne pepper, tomatoes, salsa and water. Cook over low heat for 30 minutes or longer, if you have the time. Serve hot on toasted buns.