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Sloppy Jack(fruit) Sandwiches
why should Joe get have all the messy fun? Truth be told, sloppy joe
sandwiches were never my favorite thing. I remember back in second or
third grade and learning that sloppy joe sandwiches were on the menu
that day at school and bursting into tears. Was it because, true to its
name, it was a sloppy mess? Was it the first sign that I was a budding
vegan? Or that I was a budding drama queen? (Be nice.)
Why revisit sloppy joe’s now? Well, in an effort to clear out our
pantry the other day, I made something that my husband said would be
great in a sandwich. Without intentionally trying, I’d created a
reinterpretation of the sloppy joe sandwich with a few extra tweaks.
Rarely will you see me eating anything out of a can but jackfruit is
one of those very few things that you can buy fresh but is better in
this case to be canned. Canned jackfruit, which can found in the Asian
section of international markets, tears apart into shreds that are
reminiscent of meat and is a fun option for gluten-free vegans or those
trying to limit their soy. In the case of this recipe, you will want to
buy jackfruit that is packed in water or brine not syrup. Slow-cooked
into a thick, smoky and tender sandwich filling with pops of sweet
flavor from the corn and bell pepper, this is delicious in a bun or,
for the gluten-free, corn tortillas for more of a carnitas-esque meal.
Serve with a bright salad and a pickle and you’ve got a great sandwich
you can enjoy year-round. You can make this in your slow-cooker as
well, adding the defrosted corn the last thirty minutes. Pro-tip: if
you want a sandwich that is less messy than the sloppy joe’s of yore,
toast the bun first to provide a more stable surface.
Sloppy Jack(fruit) Sandwiches
1/4 cup low-sodium vegetable stock or water or 1 tablespoon olive oil
1 yellow onion, diced
3 garlic cloves, minced
1 jalapeno pepper, sliced or minced (optional) (leave seeds in for more heat)
1 red bell pepper, minced
1 tablespoon tamari
1 20-oz. can jackfruit, packed in water or brine
1 heaping cup corn kernels, defrosted
13.5 - 14 oz. vegan BBQ sauce (I used Organicville Tangy BBQ Sauce)
Salt and pepper to taste
In a large skillet, heat your stock, water or olive oil over medium
heat. Add the diced onion and sauté for three minutes until softened.
Add the garlic, jalapeno pepper, and red bell pepper. Stir together for
a minute and then add the tamari. Cook for another minute.
While this is cooking, prepare your jackfruit. Drain and rinse, then
break into strings using a fork. It’s okay if all the pieces don’t
perfectly shred: they will further break apart while cooking and you
can also break up more with your spatula. Add to the pan along with the
corn and BBQ sauce.
Turn the heat down to medium-low and cook, stirring occasionally, for 20 minutes. Serve warm on a bun or tortilla and enjoy!
2013, 2014, Vegan Street