Comfort Food: BBQ Sandwiches, Steamers and Sloppy Joes

In spite of this cold weather and without the use of a grill, we can still have a taste of barbecue. Recipes for Barbecue Sandwiches and Sloppy Joes are synonymous around here. Add a slice of processed cheese or thick mozzarella to complete the experience. If you’d like, add a layer of coleslaw or fresh sliced tomatoes. Garnish with an oversized dill pickle.

bbq 014Sloppy Joes, 1960s recipe card

  • 2# hamburger (If you like a more saucy sloppy Joe, use only 1 lb.)
  • 1 can tomato sauce or ½ cup catsup and ½ cup water
  • 1 onion, chopped fine
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • ½ teaspoon salad mustard
  • ½ teaspoon chili powder or less
  • Stir until hamburger is broken up. Simmer 20 minutes.
  • 8 hamburger buns

Notes: The original recipe has the raw hamburger cooked with the other ingredients. I prefer to cook the hamburger first and drain off the fat before adding the other ingredients. I suggest you cook the onions beforehand unless you like your onions chewy) Then add the rest of the ingredients and simmer for 20 minutes. Toast buns, pile on the hamburger mixture, (add a slice of cheese) and serve.

Other thoughts: Barbecue sandwiches are basically sauce and hamburger mixed together with seasonings. Add cheese only if you must. But if you want to experiment, try adding any of the following ingredients:

  • 1 tablespoon prepared mustard
  • 1 tablespoon brown sugar
  • 1 tablespoon vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
  • ½ cup celery, finely chopped
  • ½ cup green pepper, finely chopped

Cook the celery, onion, and green pepper until tender and then add to other ingredients or add 2 tablespoons of your favorite barbecue sauce.

Be creative with choice of buns. Who says we have to use hamburger buns?

Substitutions: From Recipes from the Past

Catsup: Use a cup of tomato sauce added to 1 ¼ cup cups of brown sugar, 2 tablespoons of vinegar, ¼ teaspoon of cinnamon and a dash of ground cloves and allspice.

Red & green sweet pepper: Use canned pimientos.

Bread Crumbs: Use crushed corn or wheat flakes or other dry cereals. Use potato flakes.

Butter: Use 7/8 cup of solid shortening pus ½ teaspoon of salt

bbq 022Hamburger in a Bun, 1970s, Shekinah Church

  • 6 hamburger buns
  • 1 lb. lean ground beef
  • 2 tablespoons finely chopped onion
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/8 teaspoon pepper
  • 2 (8oz.) cans tomato sauce

Hollow out center of buns, leaving bottoms and ½ inch rim. Crumble up the removed bread and mix well with meat, onion, salt, pepper, and 1 ½ cups sauce. Bake mixture in 375 degree oven for 20 minutes. Place mixture in hallowed out buns and bake in 375 degree oven for an additional 20 minutes. Spoon ½ can sauce over the buns and bake 5 more minutes.

Home Made Salve, 1940s Recipe Card

This is definitely an old time remedy. Today a trip to the pharmacy is much easier than trying to make this in the kitchen and far less dangerous.

  • Unsalted butter
  • Rosin
  • Beeswax
  • Each the size of an egg
  • Add 15 drops clean turpentine

Heat slow but never let boil. Add turpentine when taken off heat.