Is that an oxymoron? Well, maybe it is.
Now don’t get me wrong. But just because sloppy joes are . . . sloppy, that’s not a reason to hate them. Once, when I was a teenager, and staying with my sister who lived in Provo, Utah, the youth group at church went on a rafting trip, and I got to go along, too.
After a long day of rafting on the Green River, we were all sunburned, with chapped lips and sore muscles. The youth leaders had made a huge pot of sloppy joe mix, and let me tell you, I remember thinking that sandwich was the best thing I had eaten in my entire life.
Hopefully, this recipe will taste good whether you’re exhausted with heat stroke or not.
gourmet sloppy joes
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 small onion, chopped
1 red bell pepper, chopped
teaspoon grated Italian seasoning (like the McCormack grinder in the picture, or just plain Italian seasoning)
1 pound lean ground beef
2 tablespoons tomato paste
1 teaspoon brown sugar
1 teaspoon balsamic vinegar
1 6 ounce can tomato sauce
1/3 cup sun dried tomatoes, chopped
salt and pepper, to taste
4-6 hamburger buns
1. Heat olive oil in a large skillet over medium-low heat. Add in onions, and cook until almost tender, add in bell pepper and cook for 2-3 minutes more. Add in Italian seasoning. Add in beef, and cook until browned.
2. Stir in tomato paste, brown sugar, vinegar, sauce, and sun-dried tomatoes. Let simmer for 2-3 minutes, and season with salt and pepper. Serve on rolls.