Friday, May 6, 2016

Kangarooben







     Kangarooben!
     Without a doubt, this is one of the wildest reuben sandwiches ever made!  
     A Kangaroo Burger Patty • Chicago Neon Relish & Vindaloo Curry Reuben Sauce • Cheddar & Mozzarella Cheese • Serbian Style Sweet Sauerkraut with Juniper Berries • Marble Rye Bread.
 
     The first sauerkraut that ever landed on Australian shores was aboard Captain James Cook's ship in the 1700's.  James Cook knew that the vitamin C in sauerkraut prevented scurvy.  Kangaroo was easy prey back in those days, so it is quite possible that the first sauerkraut and kangaroo sandwich was made by Captain Cook's crew.
     Using a ground Kangaroo Patty to make a Reuben with ordinary ingredients would not do today's sandwich justice.  Customizing each sandwich component is the best choice!    
     The Reuben Sauce for this recipe is a nice departure from a traditional Thousand Island Dressing.  Chicago Style Neon Relish and Indian Vindaloo Curry Paste flavor the Reuben Sauce.  Neon Relish has an interesting Greek spice flavor.  Vindaloo curry paste is a simple red curry that was made from ingredients that the Portuguese introduced to India.  This red curry paste has a nice balance of spicy red chile pepper and Indian spices.  Today's Neon Vindaloo Reuben Sauce was designed specifically for the flavor of kangaroo meat.
     Swiss Cheese (Emmentaler) is the traditional choice for a Reuben Sandwich.  In modern times, anything goes when creating a gourmet Reuben.  A combination of cheddar and mozzarella creates a mild flavor that tastes good on a Kangarooben.
     Sweet Serbian Style Sauerkraut is a good choice for today's Kangarooben.  Sweet Serbian Sauerkraut is similar to Bavarian Sauerkraut.  Sweet Sauerkraut is best if it is cooked with a small amount of pork fat.  A little bit of hickory smoked bacon was added to the sauerkraut for flavor.  Juniper Berries are a classic sauerkraut flavor additive.  Juniper Berries are what flavors Gin.
     Marble Rye Bread is a nice artisan bread that has been popular in restaurants during the last 2 decades.  Bavarian Black Rye Bread Dough and Seedless Rye Bread Dough are rolled together to create a swirl effect, which looks nice on a plate.

     Neon Vindaloo Reuben Sauce: 
     This recipe yields enough for 2 sandwiches.
     Neon Relish is hard to find outside of the Chicago area.  It can be purchased on the internet.  No other relish looks or tastes like Neon Relish!
     Vindaloo Curry Paste is available at Indian food markets.  
     Step 1:  Place 3 tablespoons of mayonnaise in a small mixing bowl.
     Add 1 tablespoon of ketchup.
     Add 1 teaspoon of dijon mustard.
     Add 1 tablespoon of Chicago Style Neon Relish.  ()
     Add 1/2 teaspoon of Vindaloo Curry Paste.
     Step 2:  Stir the ingredients together.
     Place the sauce in a small container.
     Refrigerate the neon Vindaloo Curry Reuben sauce for 30 minutes, so the flavors meld.
 
     Serbian Sweet Sauerkraut with Juniper Berries: 
     This recipe yields almost 2 cups.  (Enough for about 4 or 5 sandwiches.  Any extra sauerkraut can be served with another meal.)
     Sweet Serbian Style Sauerkraut is used for this recipe.  Serbian Sauerkraut is not always available.  Sweet Bavarian Style Sauerkraut is a good substitute.  
     Sweet Sauerkraut usually is not rinsed before cooking.  For this recipe it is best to rinse the sauerkraut or the flavor will be too sweet.
     Step 1:  Place 12 ounces of Serbian Sweet Sauerkraut in a strainer.
     Rinse the sauerkraut twice with cold water.
     Step 2:  Place the sauerkraut in a sauce pot.
     Add 2 tablespoons of dried juniper berries.
     Add 1 slice of smoked bacon that is coarsely chopped.
     Add enough water to barely cover the sauerkraut.
     Step 3:  Place the sauce pot over medium high heat.
     Bring the liquid to a boil.
     Step 4:  Reduce the temperature to very low heat.
     Gently simmer till the juniper berries become soft and the flavors meld.
     Step 5:  Remove the pot from the heat.
     Place 1/3 cup of the sauerkraut in a strainer.
     Press all of the excess liquid out of the sauerkraut.
     Place the sandwich portion of sauerkraut in a bowl.
     Keep the sauerkraut portion warm on a stove top.

     Kangarooben Sandwich: 
     This recipe yields 1 Kangarooben Sandwich!
     Ground Kangaroo Meat is available at wild game stores and some butcher shops.  Often the ground kangaroo is sold as frozen pre-portioned burger patties.    
     Kangaroo is a disease free, clean tasting, free range wild game meat.  Kangaroo should be cooked no more than a medium rare to medium finish temperature.  The flavor of kangaroo meat is milder than venison and it is almost as mild tasting as lamb.
     For this sandwich, it is best to cook the kangaroo burger patty first and keep it warm.  Kangaroo has only 2% fat, but the thin blood adds plenty of moisture.  Cooking the kangaroo burger patty first will allow some of the excess juices to seep out of the burger.    
     Step 1:  Shape 6 ounces of ground kangaroo into an oval burger patty shape, so that it is about the same size as the sandwich bread.
     Season the kangaroo burger patty with sea salt and black pepper.
     Step 2:  Heat a seasoned sauté pan or cast iron griddle over medium heat.
     Add 1/2 tablespoon of unsalted butter.
     Place the kangaroo patty on the butter.
     Grill the kangaroo burger on both sides, till it is cooked to a medium/rare to medium finish temperature).
     Place the kangaroo burger aside on a wire screen roasting rack and keep it warm on a stove top.
     Step 3:  Heat a cast iron griddle over medium/medium low heat.
     Brush 2 slices of marble rye bread with melted unsalted butter.
     Place the buttered rye bread slices in the hot pan.
     Step 4:  Place a few thin slices of cheddar cheese and mozzarella cheese on both slices of bread.
     Cook the bread like a grill cheese sandwich.
     Step 5:  When the cheese starts to melt, spread about 1 tablespoon of the neon vindaloo reuben sauce over the cheese on each slice of bread.
     Step 6:  Place the kangaroo patty on one slice of the bread.
     Place about 3 to 4 ounces of the Serbian Sweet Sauerkraut with Juniper Berries on top of the kangaroo patty.
     Step 7:  When the bread is toasted golden brown, flip the plain half of the sandwich on top of the kangaroo patty & sauerkraut half of the sandwich.
     Use a spatula to set the sandwich on a cutting board.
     Cut the sandwich in half.
     Step 8:  Place the Kangarooben Sandwich on a plate.
     Garnish the plate with endive lettuce, Bread & Butter Pickle Chips and roasted red pepper strips.  (optional)
 
     Kangarooben is kind of a catchy name!  This definitely is one of the most interesting reuben sandwiches and it is very light on the tummy, because the kangaroo meat is almost fat free.  Kangarooben is a hoppin' good sandwich, mate!

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