The picture not fitting your image of a sloppy joe sandwich? Then you must be from somewhere other than my home state, New Jersey. There, a sloppy joe is a far cry from ground meat doused in red sauce. Rather, it’s a cold, double decker deli sandwich made with meat, cheese, slaw and russian dressing. Lots of it. Lots of all of it.
Of all the classic Jersey foods, including disco fries (french fries topped with cheese and brown gravy) and taylor ham (sliced pork roll), the north Jersey sloppy joe is my favorite. And I’m not the only one. It’s not uncommon to find people arguing over which deli makes the best joe. Serious Eats even got in the action!
Though I have a preferred spot, I’m going to stay out of the fray and make my own sloppy joes at home. Since turkey joes are my favorite, there’s no better excuse to indulge in this behemoth sandwich than Thanksgiving leftovers!
When I make sloppy joes, I skip the third layer of bread. (The blasphemy!) I also tend to use cole slaw from a great local deli, but you can use homemade. Just stick with the old fashioned, mayo kind. If you’re going to put your energy in making something homemade, though, I say make your own Russian Dressing. It’s incredibly easy and so much better than the stuff you’ll buy in the jar.
adapted from Elise of Simply Recipes
makes about 1/2 c
1/3 cup mayonnaise
1 1/2 Tbsp ketchup
1 1/2 teaspoons prepared horseradish
1/2 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
3 tsp relish (I like sweet, but dill pickle relish works, too)
salt and pepper
1. Combine all ingredients. Adjust seasoning to taste.
NJ Style Turkey Sloppy Joe
sliced roast turkey
old fashioned cole slaw
1. For the classic version, toast 3 slices of rye bread per sandwich. For a more modest version, toast 2 slices per sammy.
2. Layer turkey, cheese, slaw and top with russian dressing. If making the double decker version, put turkey between two slices and cheese and slaw between the other two. Spread both the top and middle slices of bread with dressing. Cut into 2 or 3 pieces and enjoy!