January 20, 2015

Deli Roll

Good lord Pastrami, cover up your shame
There are some foods that are unique to a place, a people, or a way of life. They exemplify and catalogue a culture, in culinary form. And there are other foods that are equally unique to people, places, games & hobbies (that was a Trivial Pursuit pun, for the slow class) that are clearly just lazy ways that lazy people decided to throw together some food. Lazily. But that doesn't mean we can't take that laziness and make some awesome food with it.

1 sheet of Puff Pastry
1/4 lb Smoked Turkey
1/2 lb Pastrami
1/2 an onion (if you have trouble finding this, take a whole onion, and cut it once down the middle)
1/2 a jar, marinara (yes, if you're a purist, you can also make this yourself. But that involves peeling tomatoes, which is annoying as hell, and also a different recipe)
1/4 tsp Black Pepper
1 TBSP extra virgin olive oil
An average sized human's pinch of salt
An optional egg

Warning: Aroma may cause passing
hobos to cartoonishly rise into the air
The first step to this recipe is to find the rules for being a 3rd generation US transplant from Eastern Europe. The second step is to throw those rules out the window. Because we're badasses, and we can do that. Next, dice your onion segment and saute it in your oil over medium heat for 5 minutes. Chop up half of your pastrami, and add it in. Stir it occasionally, and let it keep cooking down until it smells roughly like the combination of delicious cows and all the joy in the universe. Then add in your marinara, salt, and pepper. Let it cook for another 2 minutes, stirring occasionally.

Hey guys! I'm puff pastry! I'm just
here to take your dignity. And soul.
Now take your puff pastry. Likely, you had to buy this frozen from a store, and forgot to defrost it ahead of time. Feel stupid, and let it defrost until it's easily workable (approximately, 1 lifetime). Smear your pastrami-tomato-onion goop all over that puff pastry. Then layer the remaining pastrami and turkey on it. Now comes the fun part, and by "fun" I mean "terrifying." You get to roll your sheet of puff pastry up into...roll form. And if you do it wrong, or the pastry tears, the innards will spill out, and everybody will laugh, and NOBODY will ask you to junior prom.

Awww....look at how CUTE it is.
Let's eat it. 
Pretty much, you tuck the sides in, and just roll. Do your best. Try not to freak out when something inevitably goes wrong and you have to use a second piece of puff pastry to patch the first piece. If you're feeling extra adventurous, beat an egg and brush it on top of your now completed, and hypothetically roll shaped, roll. This will cause it to get all golden and cool-looking in the oven, but isn't necessary. Bake it at 350 degrees until it's golden brown and awesome looking. That usually takes about an hour, but every oven is different. And there you have it! A delicious and vaguely regional delicacy made more palatable with some work, a little ingenuity, and a lot of pastrami!


  1. I like that this is ostensibly a food blog, but is also a snark factory.

  2. If you bake it at 400, you can cut the cooking time about in half...maybe less.

    1. That's true! But the pastrami renders down more and gets crispier by cooking it slower.