Imagine my shock when I went to a restaurant and ordered a barbecue beef sandwich and it had sliced roast beef. I was horrified.
After I got over my shock, I grew to love barbecue beef sandwiches from that very same restaurant that disappointed me the first time, but I never outgrew my fondness for sloppy joes the way my mother made them.
And it has to be the "Original" version.
Since we moved to Colorado, sightings of Open Pit are pretty rare. I guess it's a midwest thing. But I've got a few bottles squirreled away for the times when I need that taste of home. We've all got our vices, right?
Mom's Sloppy Joes
1 medium onion, diced
Simmer the mixture for at least 15 minutes; longer is better. You want the meat to absorb the sauce and take on that dark red color, and you want the meat to soften.
Or, okay, maybe that's not what you want, but that's how mom made it. If you like your meat with a little chew, take it off the heat whenever you think it's ready. Otherwise, cook until the meat is soft. Mom's sloppy joe meat was soft like a stew, not browned like taco meat.
You might need to add more ketchup and/or Open Pit as the meat cooks. It should be a loose mixture, but not a soup.
If you can't find Open Pit, I don't know what you can substitute. All I can suggest is that you use a barbecue sauce that you like.
I've tried other barbecue sauces, and I haven't found any that are similar in taste to Open Pit. It's tangy with a little kick; it's not sweet, and there's no smoke. It sounds simple, but I've tried making my own version and I just can't get it right. I've resorted to stocking up when I see it anywhere, usually about once every year or so. I only use it for two recipes - neither of them ribs - so it lasts quite a while.
Oh, and yes those are homemade buns. Recipes will be coming along soon.
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