Thursday, April 4, 2013

Sandwich For A Crowd

My mom gave me this recipe YEARS ago (at least 15). She had found it in a Taste of Home magazine before the days of widely-used internet, and certainly before the days of recipes easily searched for (and found) on the www.

I have made it on numerous occasions. Always for a crowd (although Shilo requests it frequently for an every-day type meal/snack).

I made a single recipe the other day (seriously, my first time making only two sandwiches - one for my neighbor, whose husband suddenly passed away the night before, and one for us). Shilo has been in heaven for two days, as she pretty much single-handedly ate the whole thing.

These are awesome.

Sandwich For A Crowd
(Makes 2 large sandwiches, and feeds 12-16 people, depending on how thick you slice them)

2 unsliced loaves of french or italian bread
(I love WalMart's bakery bread for these; their french bread is usually longer and narrower, the italian bread is shorter and wider)
1 (8oz) pkg. cream cheese
1 cup shredded cheddar cheese
1/4 cup sliced green onion
1/4 cup mayonnaise
1 Tbs. Worcestershire sauce
1 lb. thinly sliced deli ham
1 lb. thinly sliced deli roast beef
10-12 thin slices of dill pickle (sandwich sliced - length-wise)

Cut the bread in half length-wise. Pull some of the bread from the middle of the top and bottom halves, leaving a 1/2" to 3/4" shell (discard removed bread or save for another use). Combined cream cheese, mayonnaise, Worcestershire, and onion. Mix in shredded cheddar. Spread over cut sides of bread, making sure to spread it to the edges (this will sort of "glue" the sandwich together). Layer ham down the hollow center on top half of each loaf, and roast beef down the center on the bottom half of each loaf (a total of 1 lb. of meat per loaf). Place pickles down the center of each sandwich, then gently press halves together. Wrap tightly in plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 2 hours (up to 24 hours+).  Cut into 1-1/2" slices (bigger or smaller, if you like).

Note: on this particular batch, I should have spread the cream cheese mixture to the edges better (always in a rush these days). Spread it to the edges of each loaf. My ham and roast beef slices were a little thick, too - the deli lady wasn't the most pleasant I've met.

Here's how they look once they are cut into servings:

Variations (that I created back in my days of zest-full entertaining):

Olive Turkey
Replace ham and roast beef with thinly sliced deli turkey (plain or smoked, whatever your preference). Delete green onions and add finely chopped black olives to the cheese mixture. Place black olives down the center of the sandwiches in place of pickles.

Club (Turkey, Ham, Bacon)
Replace roast beef with thinly sliced deli turkey. Omit green onions from the cheese mixture. Place crisp bacon strips down the center of each sandwich in place of pickles.

I love that these can be made a day ahead. I have found that you can even stack them two high in the refrigerator and they come out just fine.  I have made up to 8 sandwiches at a time and think they are a great alternative to the Costco meat-and-cheese tray.  Try them!

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