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What Makes Philly Cheesesteak Special

Philly Cheesesteak is a special kind of sandwich, which definitely originated from Philadelphia in the early 1930s and which was a concoction by Italian immigrants, Pat and Harry Olivieri, who thought of using chopped steak and cheese as a sandwich filling inserted on Italian rolls. What was a simple experiment of a steak sandwich became fast selling, even until now, because of its incredible meaty and cheesy taste combined and at that time, the Olivieris took the golden opportunity of opening Pat’s King of Steaks on the 9th Street and Passyunk Avenue, Philadelphia, to serve the growing number of steak sandwich lovers.

Cheese sandwich is basically made up of beef steak, thinly sliced rib-eye and sauteed, combined with melted cheese and spread on a long, crusty hot roll bread with toppings, such as fried onions, sweet peppers, sauteed mushrooms, and plenty of ketchup. The rib-eye is the cut of choice for cheesesteak sandwich because when grilled, it gives a great balance of flavor, texture, and bite. The Olivieris used sliced white American cheese or sliced provolone, which were grilled and melted together with the steak, however, later through the years, because of time savings, Cheese Wiz became a more convenient substitute. The kind of bread rolls recommended for Philly cheesesteak sandwiches are those that are long with round ends, light, crisp but not overly crunchy, tender but not overly chewy, perfect size to evenly distribute the steak and cheese in it. Technically and preferably, sauteed onions are the best kind of toppings for Philly cheesesteak sandwiches because the sweetness of the onions, when they are sauteed, blends well with the meaty and cheese flavor of the sandwich.

The procedures to cook and prepare a Philly cheesesteak sandwich are easy and simple to follow: in a frying pan over high heat, add olive oil and when the oil sizzles to a drop of water, lower the heat to medium and start adding the onions followed by mushrooms, saute quickly until the onions look brown, then add the steak slices, cook for about 3 minutes until brown on each side, add salt and pepper to taste, and later add cheese slices over meat until melted, and finally arranged all these ingredients into the baked rolls. If Cheese Wiz is the preferred cheese of choice, have this melted on a double boiler or in a microwave and then spread this fast and evenly on top of the grilled steak slices.

For Philadelphia locals, they actually have two kinds of choices for a Philly sandwich – steak sandwich, which is simply grilled steak slices with toppings, or a cheesesteak sandwich, which is obviously with melted cheese and other toppings, but what has become synonymous to Philadelphia’s best Philly sandwich is the cheesesteak sandwich.

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