Hoagies, Heros and Submarines

          It seems appropriate that as football season is in full swing we celebrate by eating the quintessential tail gate food, the hero sandwich. At its most basic, a hero is a large sandwich made of a long crusty roll split lengthwise and filled with meats and cheese (and tomato and onion and lettuce and condiments galore).  At its finest, it’s a culinary work of art.  

These delicious full meals on a bun can also be called grinders, heroes, hoagies, hoagy, Italian sandwich, poor boy, or submarine sandwich. You can serve them hot or cold, make them vegan or a carnivore’s delight and when you pack them up in a cooler with chips and salad and fruit you have the perfect pre-game tail gate meal.

The following recipes are not exactly your traditional or typical hero sandwich recipes with the layers of meat and cheese. I leave those babies to the fast food franchises. However, these really BIG and delicious sandwiches are perfect to serve when you’re looking to score extra points with your food fans.


1 (16 ounce) can white beans, drained and rinsed

2 tablespoons lemon juice

3 tablespoons cream cheese, softened

3 tablespoons olive oil

1/3 cup grated Parmesan cheese

1/8 teaspoon dried chili pepper

1/2 teaspoon dried marjoram

1/2 cup chopped red peppers

1/2 cup chopped radishes

1/2 cup chopped celery

1 6 oz can white tuna, drained and flaked

6 (10 inch) flavored or plain flour tortillas

In blender container or food processor, combine drained beans with the lemon juice, cream cheese, olive oil, Parmesan, chili and marjoram. Process until the mixture is almost smooth. Spread mixture on the tortillas and then divide the red peppers, radishes, celery and tuna between and radishes between the 6 tortillas. Roll them up egg roll style, enclosing the filling. Cut the roll in half and wrap them in plastic wrap. These sandwiches can be made one day before you need them. Serve cold or they can be wrapped in foil and heated at 350 for 15 minutes if them warm. Makes 6 sandwiches.


2 cups chopped cooked chicken or turkey (leftovers are perfect)

3/4 cup chopped pears

1/4 cup chopped celery

1/2 cup chopped walnuts

1/2 cup mayonnaise

1 teaspoon lemon juice

3 tablespoons dried cranberries

1/8 teaspoon salt

8 thick slices of sour dough bread

leaf lettuce

 In a bowl combine the chicken, pears, celery, walnuts, mayonnaise, cranberries, lemon juice and salt. Mix well. Make sandwiches by placing the lettuce on 4 slices of raisin bread and placing 1/4 of the salad on top of each piece of lettuce. Place the remaining bread on top of each sandwich. Makes 4 sandwiches


You can add cold cuts if you want to make it a heartier sandwich

1 cup fresh basil

1/3 cup olive oil

2-3 tablespoons grated parmesan cheese

1 tablespoon capers, drained, optional

1 tablespoon rice wine vinegar

2-3 teaspoons Dijon mustard

1 teaspoon minced garlic

1 French bread (unsliced)

1 (14 ounce) can artichoke hearts, drained and chopped (can use more)

4-5 ounces sliced provolone cheese or mozzarella cheese (or to taste)

2 large tomatoes, thinly sliced

2 cups fresh spinach, torn in pieces (or you can use lettuce instead)

To make the basil/parmesan mixture: (this mixture can be doubled if desired) In a blender or food processor bowl combine basil, Parmesan, capers, wine vinegar, mustard and garlic cloves; process until almost smooth. Cover and refrigerate for 8-24 hours (overnight is better!).Cut the bread in half length wise. Hollow out each half (leaving a 1/2-inch shell).Spread the prepared basil mixture over each bread half, and then layer artichoke hearts (at this point you can add in cold cuts if desired) then provolone cheese, tomato then top with spinach. Cover with the bread top. Cut the sandwich crosswise into about 6-8 pieces

Modified from epicurean.com


3/4 cup sliced mushrooms

1/2 cup sliced cucumber

2 tablespoon chopped kalmata olives (or black ones if you prefer)

2 tablespoon crumbled feta

1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar

1/8 teaspoon dried oregano

2 tomatoes, thinly sliced

1 teaspoon minced garlic

4 whole wheat submarine rolls

4 lettuce leaves

12 slices deli ham

12 slices deli smoked turkey

In a bowl combine the mushrooms, cucumbers, olives, feta, vinegar, oregano, tomatoes and garlic. Toss to combine and let sit at room temperature for 30 minutes, tossing occasionally. Cut a thin slice off top of each roll and set aside. Cut a 2-inch wide, U shaped wedge down the center of each roll. Drain vegetable mixture. Line each indentation with a lettuce leaf and then arrange ham and turkey evenly over lettuce. Divide the vegetable mixture between the 4 rolls and cover the mixture with the top of the roll. Makes 4

Submitted by Barb Collentine Indianapolis IN

4 tablespoons mayonnaise
2 tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro or parsley
1 teaspoon minced garlic
1 small jalapeno chili, minced
1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
6 slices cooked turkey bacon
4 thick slices sourdough bread, toasted
8 thin slices turkey pastrami
4 large tomato slices
1 avocado, pitted, peeled, sliced
Romaine lettuce leaves

In a small bowl combine the mayonnaise, cilantro, garlic chili and cumin.  Cover and refrigerate. Spread the mayonnaise mixture over the bread. Cover 2 bread slices with turkey, then tomato, avocado and bacon. Season generously with salt and pepper. Top with lettuce and remaining bread slices. Cut diagonally and serve. Serves 2.


 1/2 cup guacamole (store bought or homemade)

 4 hoagie buns, split

 4 slices pepper jack cheese, cut in half diagonally

 16 thin slices cucumber

 8 thin red bell pepper rings

 4 slices provolone cheese, cut in half diagonally

 8 slices tomato

 ground pepper
Spread guacamole on cut-sides of buns. To assemble layer bottom half of each bun with 2 pieces of cheddar, 4 slices cucumber, 2 slices of pepper, 2 pieces of provolone and 2 slices tomato. Season with pepper. Top with remaining bun half. Secure with toothpick. Makes 4 sandwiches.

© Eileen Goltz tailgate10



Ok, so you spent the day at the orchard picking WAY too many apples and now you gotta do something with them. Eating a few fresh off the tree beauties while deciding what to make is totally mandatory. A Pie or three, of course. A crisp or two, absolutely. After the first round of baking and eating and pants loosening subsides and you realize that you have enough apples left to feed everyone in New Jersey. It’s obviously time to break out the applesauce recipes.

There is nothing better than homemade applesauce made with your very own hand-picked apples. Having an apple peeler really helps but peeling and cutting by had is actually a great family affair (much like picking the apples). When making applesauce I think its best to use more than one kind of apple in each recipe. Of course, if you have a preference, by all means use the one you like best. For a sweeter less sugar added applesauce I suggest using Jonagold, Crispin or Golden Delicious as these varieties tend to have higher sugar content.

          While most applesauce recipes call for cooking on the top of the range there’s nothing that says you can’t use your microwave. When you cook the applesauce on the stove top I make sure to add a little water to the mix so that the apples won’t stick to the bottom of the pan. You can always substitute brown sugar for white but know that it gives a slightly deeper color and flavor to the applesauce.

  If you want chunky applesauce, use a potato masher to mash the cooked apples. If you prefer smooth apple sauce, run the cooked apples through a food mill or processor.

Applesauce Tips:

Adding a few strips of lemon peel to the apples while cooking heightens the apple flavor.

The sugar amounts are just guidelines and can be adjusted to suit your own taste.

1 large apple = 3/4 cup sauce

1 medium apple= 1/2 cup sauce


3 to 4 lbs of peeled, cored, and quartered apples ( Golden Delicious, Granny Smith, Fuji, Jonathan or Mcintosh)

4 strips of lemon peel – use a vegetable peeler to strip 4 lengths

Juice of one lemon (3 to 4 tablespoons)

3 inches of cinnamon stick

1/4 cup of dark brown sugar

up to 1/4 cup of white sugar

1 cup of water

1/2 teaspoon of salt

Put all ingredients into a large pot. Cover. Bring to boil. Lower heat and simmer for 20-30 minutes. Remove from heat. Remove cinnamon sticks and lemon peels. Mash with potato masher. Ready to serve, either hot or refrigerated.

Can store for up to a year in the freezer. Serves 8 to 10.


Most applesauce recipes call for boiling the apples. But in this applesauce recipe, the apples are roasted.

8-10 Granny Smith, Rome Beauty or Jonagold apples

1 tablespoon olive oil

1 tablespoon honey

1/2 teaspoon cinnamon

1/4 teaspoon cloves

1/4 teaspoon salt

Preheat oven to 425. Peel and dice apples into 1-inch pieces. The more uniform the apple pieces are, the more evenly they’ll cook. Toss apples with remaining ingredients. Spread out in an even layer on a sturdy baking sheet or shallow roasting pan. Roast 10 minutes. Stir. Roast another 5-15 minutes until apples are soft enough to mash lightly. Scrape apples into a dish, mashing lightly. Leave some chunks, if desired. Garnish with a sprinkle of cinnamon. Serves 8.


6 Anjou or Comice pears (slightly underripe), peeled and cut into large pieces
4 apples (Granny Smith, McIntosh, and/or Golden Delicious)
2 to 3 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
1 cup apple juice
1/2 cup sugar
1 teaspoon finely grated lemon zest

Core, peel, and cut the pears and apples into large chunks. In a large, heavy pot, toss with lemon juice to prevent discoloration. Combine the pears and apples with the remaining ingredients and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat and simmer, partially covered, for 15 minutes or until the fruit is tender but not mushy. Uncover the pot, stir and cook 5 minutes more. Adjust the flavors and remove from heat, stirring carefully so as not to break up the fruit too much. Cool to room temperature. Refrigerate, covered, for up to 4 days. Serves 6 to 8.


12 medium apples
1 cup cranberry juice
1/2 lemon, juiced
2 tablespoons sugar
1/2 cup dried cranberries
Wash the apples and chop them up without peeling. Squeeze lemon juice over them as you cut them. Put apples in crockpot with cranberry juice — use 1 cup if you want the applesauce thick, more if you want it thin. Stir in sugar to suit your taste. Let apples stew on low for 6-8 hours. About an hour or two before serving, stir in cranberries. Refrigerate until ready to serve. Serves 8 to 10.


2 1/2 pounds small Red Delicious apples (about 6 medium), quartered, cored, cut into 1-inch pieces
2 cups water
1 1-pint basket fresh strawberries, hulled, halved
1 3-ounce package strawberry-flavored gelatin
2 teaspoons fresh lemon juice (optional)

 In a large sauce pan combine the apples, water and strawberries. Cover and cook over medium-low heat until apples are falling-apart tender, stirring occasionally, about 40 minutes. Mix in gelatin and stir until dissolved. Adjust tartness with lemon juice, if desired. Cover and let cool. Refrigerate until cold and thickened, at least 2 hours. (Can be prepared up to 3 days ahead.) Serves 6 to 8.

Modified from epicurean.com

Serve this applesauce hot or cold.

2 cups peeled, cored, and coarse-chopped apples
2 cups hulled strawberries, fresh or frozen (unsweetened)
1/2 cup frozen apple juice concentrate

In a medium-sized saucepan combine all ingredients. Bring to a simmer, then cover and cook over very low heat for about 25 minutes, or until apples are tender when pierced with a fork. Mash lightly or purée in a food processor, if desired. Makes 2 cups.


8 to 10 apples (use 2 different types) cored, peeled and diced

3 tablespoons vanilla extract

1 teaspoon ground nutmeg

1 teaspoon ground cinnamon

3/4 cup sugar

Place all the ingredients in a pan. (Do not add water.) Cover and cook until the apples are soft but not mushy. Mash with a potato masher because you want to leave some of the apples in chunks. Cool and serve. Serves 8. This recipe can be doubled.


4 cups cubed peeled Braeburn or Pink Lady apple
4 cups cubed peeled Granny Smith apple
1/2 cup packed brown sugar
2 teaspoons grated lemon rind
3 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
Dash of salt
2 tablespoons sour cream

Combine the apples, brown sugar, lemon rind, lemon juice, cinnamon, vanilla and salt in a Dutch oven. Cook over a medium heat for 25 minutes or until apples are tender, stirring occasionally. Remove from heat; mash to desired consistency with a fork or potato masher. Stir in the sour cream. Serve warm or chilled.


3 quarts Unsweetened Applesauce
2 lb Granulated Sugar
1 lb Brown Sugar
3/4 cup Apple Cider
1/2 teaspoon Nutmeg
1/4 teaspoon Allspice
3/4 teaspoon Cloves
3 teaspoon Cinnamon

Preheat oven to 325. In a large roasting pot combine the applesauce, sugars, and cider together and cook  for 3 hours, stirring occasionally. Add the nutmeg, allspice cloves and cinnamon. Mix to combine. Return to oven and cook 1 hour more. Apple butter requires long, slow cooking. (Can also be made in a crockpot). Makes 4 quarts. Can be frozen.

Farm Stand Foodies Unite!

I am not one of those bumper sticker people BUT if I were, it sure wouldn’t say anything about my children beating up honor students or make a political statement about saving the sloth (too late, I already married it) or even announce my trip to Wall Drugs and Pikes Peak 32 years ago. No, my bumper sticker would say, I stop AND buy at all farm stands.

            This is the time of year that I can’t go more than a couple of miles in any direction of my Fort Wayne home without seeing signs for FRESH CORN, or JUST PICKED TOMATOES, or even, PEPPERS, PEPPERS, PEPPERS. Being blessed with an abundance of enterprising farmers and the need to eat fresh produce the day it’s been picked has made the past few weeks hell on my brakes but heaven in my kitchen.

            My order is usually a dozen ears of corn and 4 or 5 peppers and a pound or two of green beans and 9 tomatoes and 3 melons and 5 pounds of onions and 8 cucumbers and whatever else catches my eye. I have one goal in mind (besides spending all my money). Creating recipes that capture the essence of the FRESH veggie and doesn’t overwhelm it with sauce or herbs or even too much salt or pepper.  The following recipes are perfect examples of what you can create with nature’s summer bounty and what fresh truly tastes like.


1 1/2 to 2 lbs. fresh green beans, ends removed

1 cup fresh mushrooms, sliced

1/4 cup olive oil

1 tablespoon melted butter or margarine

1/4 cup fresh parsley, chopped

1 teaspoon dried oregano or 1 tablespoon minced fresh oregano

Dash red pepper flakes

1/2 cup cracker crumbs

2 1/2 tablespoons minced garlic

In a saucepan, bring 5 cups water to a boil with 1 tablespoon salt. Add green beans. Parboil for 4 to 5 minutes, until just tender. Immediately dump them in a bowl of ice water to stop the cooking. Remove after 30 seconds and drain. In a large skillet, heat the olive oil and saute the garlic and mushrooms until they are just soft. Add the beans, parsley, butter or margarine and oregano. Toss with cracker crumbs and serve. Can be served hot or cold. Serves 6 to 8

Option: you can add 1/2 cup cooked crumbled bacon or 1/2 cup of Parmesan cheese if you like or omit the bread crumbs and add the juice of 1 lemon.


1 unbaked piecrust

1-1/2 cups shredded mozzarella cheese (6 ounces)

4    roma or small regular tomatoes

3/4 cup loosely packed fresh basil leaves

4 cloves garlic

1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese

1/2 cup mayonnaise or salad dressing

1/8 teaspoon ground white pepper

 Fresh basil leaves (optional)

Preheat oven to 450. Cut the tomatoes into wedges and let it drain on paper towels. Unfold the piecrust according to package directions. Line a 9-inch tart pan with pastry (it’s easier to remove the baked tart if pan has a removable bottom). Press the pastry into the fluted sides of the tart pan and trim the edges. Don’t prick. Partially bake for 5 to 7 minutes or until pastry is slightly dry.  Remove the crust from the oven and immediately sprinkle 1/2 cup of mozzarella on the bottom. Let the crust cool and reduce oven to 375. Arrange the tomato wedges over the melted cheese in the crust.

In the bowl of a food processor combine the basil and garlic and pulse for 15 seconds, don’t let it get too mushy. In a bowl, combine the garlic mixture, remaining mozzarella, mayonnaise, Parmesan and pepper. Spread the mixture evenly over tomato wedges.  Bake for 20 to 25 minutes or until the cheese is golden. Let stand 5 minutes before serving. Makes 8 appetizer or 4 entree servings.

Modified from about.com


Great on a spinach salad and it can be served hot or cold.

1 cup sugar

1 teaspoon salt

Dash dry mustard

1/4 teaspoon celery seed

1 minced onion

2 tablespoons oil

1/2 cup rice wine or apple cider vinegar

In a saucepan, combine sugar, salt, mustard and celery seed. Add grated onion, oil, and vinegar. Heat until sugar is melted. Serve warm or let cool and refrigerate to use later. Makes about 1 1/2 cups.



3 tablespoons white-wine vinegar

2 tablespoons rice vinegar

2 teaspoons soy sauce

1 teaspoon minced garlic

1 tablespoon minced fresh ginger

2 teaspoons sesame oil

1/3 cup oil


1 tablespoon sesame seeds

2 pounds green beans, trimmed

2 green onions, chopped fine (about 2 tablespoons)

In a small bowl, whisk together vinegars, soy sauce, garlic, ginger root, and sesame oil. Add canola or vegetable oil in a stream, whisking, and whisk until emulsified. Season dressing with salt and pepper. In a small dry skillet toast sesame seeds over moderate heat, stirring, until golden and transfer to a small bowl. In a large saucepan of boiling salted water, cook beans until crisp-tender, about 4 minutes. Transfer beans to a colander and rinse under cold water. Drain beans well. In a large bowl, combine beans, scallions, sesame seeds, and dressing and toss well. Serve salad chilled or at room temperature. Serves 4

Gourmet April 1995


2 to 3 cups cooked penne or bow tie pasta

About 3-4 cups of cherry tomatoes, halved or quartered

1 to 1-1/2 cups of cubed pepper jack cheese

3 or 4 cups of grilled or fresh corn cut off the ear

4 green onions, sliced thin

1/4 cup olive oil

1 tablespoon rice wine vinegar

zest and juice of 1 large lemon

5 or 6 fresh basil leaves, shredded

salt and pepper to taste

Combine all the ingredients into a salad bowl, toss to combine and serve. Serves 8

Submitted by Rachael Epstein Cleveland OH


1 large sweet onion, sliced

olive oil

kosher salt

2 teaspoons minced garlic, minced

ground black pepper

2-3 medium zucchini

10 slices bacon

1/3 cup bread crumbs

2 large springs rosemary, minced

1/3 cup grated parmesan cheese

Cut off the ends of the zucchini and slice them lengthwise, about 1/4 of an inch thick until you have 10 slices.  Set aside.

Preheat oven to 350. In a skillet, saute the sliced onions with a couple of tablespoons of olive oil and large pinch of salt until soft.  Add garlic and black pepper and saute for a couple of minutes.  Place the onions in an oven-proof dish. Season the zucchini slices with some salt and pepper.  Top each one with a slice of bacon and then layer the zucchini/bacon slices over the top of the onions in the dish. Overlap them slightly. In a bowl, mix together the bread crumbs, rosemary and parmesan cheese.  Sprinkle the mixture over the top of the zucchini and drizzle the top with additional olive oil.  Bake for 25 minutes. You can turn on the broiler for a couple of minutes at the end if you need the bacon slices aren’t totally crisp.

Modified from epicurious.com

So what exactly is a smoothie?

So what exactly is a smoothie? A hot guy (or girl in this politically correct column) with a great “what’s your horoscope sign” pick up line or a tasty and healthy beverage made of your favorite fresh fruits, juices and/or vegetables.

Ok, that wasn’t really a trick question because everyone knows that a smoothie is the alias given to a delicious fruit drink that’s been created by combining fruit, fruit juice and a milk or yogurt. Not to be confused with a slushie which is basically fruit, fruit juice, and ice a smoothie usually contains a milk or soy (non dairy) for a creamy finishing taste. Smoothies not only taste great, unless you add a ton of sugar or high calorie ice cream like ingredients, they’re usually packed with vitamins, fiber and antioxidants and are really very good for you.       

All you really need to get started is a blender, a food processor or a hand held immersion blender. Next thing, fresh (or fresh frozen) fruit. Canned is ok but fresh is best. Water, juice, ice or yogurt or milk and voila, the flip of a switch and you got yourself a smoothie. For those with sugar or dairy restrictions use sugar free substitutes use a lactose free liquid like soy or rice milk or yogurt.

 The best thing about smoothies is that there’s no right or wrong way. You make them to suit your taste, using your favorite seasonal fruits. Packed with all the vitamins and nutrients you get from fresh fruit, they make the perfect drink, day or night and add just the right touch to any meal or as a stand alone snack.


Don’t leave out the coconut cream, it really changes the flavor.

 1/2 can pineapple in its own juice, including juice

1 cup of papaya, peeled, seeded and coarsely chopped

1 mango, peeled, seeded and coarsely chopped

1 ripe banana, peeled and broken into chunks

2-3 tablespoons coconut cream (not milk)

2-3 tablespoons honey

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

1 to 1 1/2 cup plain yogurt

1 to 1 1/2 cup crushed ice

Place all the ingredients EXCEPT the ice into a blender of food processor. Process and when smooth continue blending while pouring in 1 to 1½ cups crushed ice. Process until there aren’t any large chunks of ice. Serves 4 to 6. You can substitute 1/2 cup of rum for 1/2 cup of ice if you want a smoothie with a kick.


3 cups of watermelon

1 cup cantaloupe

1/2 cup strawberries

1 cup plain yogurt

2 cups of ice

Place everything in the blender and process until smooth. Serves 4.


2 cups of lemonade

2 cups of fresh or frozen strawberries

1 cup of fruit yogurt, strawberry or raspberry flavored

1/2 lime, juiced

Place everything in the blender and process until smooth. Serves 4.

You can add 1/4 cup of vodka to this smoothie to make a nice alternative to wine with dinner.

1 banana, frozen
10 oz coffee, cold
1/2 cup of yogurt
1 to 2 teaspoons sugar, sugar substitute or honey
Blend all the ingredients except the sugar. Taste the smoothie and add the sugar to make the banana smoothie as sweet as you would like.  Serves 1. This recipe can be doubled or tripled.


1 1/2 banana cut into chunks and frozen
2 tablespoons of chocolate syrup or your favorite melted chocolate

1/3 cup chocolate chips
1 cup of yogurt
1 cup of milk
Combine all ingredients in a blend until bananas and chocolate are really mixed. Serves 1. This recipe can be doubled or tripled.


1/2 cup strawberries
1/2 cup blueberries
1/2 cup raspberries
1 banana
1/2 cup yogurt
1 cup milk
1/2 cup ice cubes

Place everything in the blender and process until smooth. Serves 2. This recipe can be doubled or tripled


1/2 cup strawberries
1/2 cup raspberries
1/2 cup cherries, pitted
1 banana
1/2 cup soy yogurt
1 cup of soy milk
1/2 cup ice cubes

Blend the soy milk, soy yogurt, banana and ice cube until a slushy liquid forms. Add the berries and cherries and blend till smooth. Serves 2.

1/3 cup of chopped pineapple
1/3 cup of sliced strawberries
1/4 of blueberries
1/4 of chopped bananas
2 scoops of lime sherbet or sorbet
5 ice cubes
1/4 cup of orange juice

Place everything in the blender and process until smooth. Serves 2. This recipe can be doubled or tripled


1 cup ripe medium peaches, diced
1cup raspberries
1 1/2 cup peach nectar
2 cup low fat peach yogurt

Combine the yogurt and nectar in a blender.  Process until smooth. Add the raspberries and peaches. Blend until smooth. Serves 3 to 4.


2 peeled and chopped up kiwis
2 bananas
1 pear
2 kiwi or vanilla yogurt

Place everything in the blender and process until smooth. Serves 2