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Cheesy Rarebit Sloppy Joes

Rarebit Sloppy Joes 1

It’s raining all weekend, right? This is the plan? Which means we’re diving back into warm and cheesy comfort food? Good, because I’ve been dying to tell you about this sloppy little number.

Rarebit Collage

It was by total serendipity that this came to be. I was making cheese rarebit for Alice, and had just finished taking photos of it. Rarebit is one of those dishes that has gone the way of escargot and beef Wellington; for those unfamiliar, it’s a Welsh dish of cheese, loosened with ale or milk or made into a thick cheese sauce and poured over toast, then broiled. Toasted cheese, I want to call it. My mom used to make cheese sauce, but she’d pour it over steamed broccoli. Remember when that was a thing? Broccoli with cheese sauce? A total 80s side dish. Does anyone do it anymore? Broccoli-cheese segregated the granolas from the junk food eaters; my mom used to make a roux of butter, flour and milk, then add handfuls of grated cheese, but I envied my friends whose moms would simply screw the lid off the jar of Cheez Whiz and pop it in the microwave.

Rarebit Sloppy Joes 2

Anyway. I’d much rather pour mine over crusty toast; I happened to have a few slices smothered in cheese sauce at the same time I was doing sloppy Joes for somethingorother, and on a whim I ladled a scoop of sloppy Joe onto sloppy cheese, and – well. Think of a chili baked potato topped with cheese, or a tomatoey pasta and cheese, or really anything with bread, meat and tomatoes – the combo begs to be topped with cheese. Or to be scooped over cheese, as it were; starting with a base of cheese sauce just adds to the sloppiness.

Rarebit Sloppy Joes 3

Cheesy Rarebit

AuthorJulie

2 Tbsp. butter, plus extra for buttering
2 Tbsp. flour
1 cup milk or beer
2 cups grated aged cheddar or Gouda cheese
1 large egg yolk (optional)
1 Tbsp. (15 mL) grainy mustard (optional)
1/2 tsp. Worcestershire sauce (optional)
salt and pepper
4 thick slices good-quality crusty bread

1

Preheat the oven to 400F.

2

In a medium saucepan, heat the butter and flour over medium-high heat until the butter melts; whisk until smooth, then whisk in the milk and bring to a boil. Once the mixture bubbles, cook it for a full minute, stirring until it thickens, then turn the heat down to low and quickly whisk in the cheese, egg yolk, mustard and Worcestershire. Season with salt and pepper and whisk until melted and smooth.

3

Toast your bread in a single layer on a baking sheet in the oven until golden. If you like, butter your toast. Pour the cheese sauce over top and turn the oven up to broil; run the rarebit under the broiler for a few minutes, until golden and blistered on top. Serve immediately, or use as a base for sloppy Joes.

Ingredients

 2 Tbsp. butter, plus extra for buttering
 2 Tbsp. flour
 1 cup milk or beer
 2 cups grated aged cheddar or Gouda cheese
 1 large egg yolk (optional)
 1 Tbsp. (15 mL) grainy mustard (optional)
 1/2 tsp. Worcestershire sauce (optional)
 salt and pepper
 4 thick slices good-quality crusty bread

Directions

1

Preheat the oven to 400F.

2

In a medium saucepan, heat the butter and flour over medium-high heat until the butter melts; whisk until smooth, then whisk in the milk and bring to a boil. Once the mixture bubbles, cook it for a full minute, stirring until it thickens, then turn the heat down to low and quickly whisk in the cheese, egg yolk, mustard and Worcestershire. Season with salt and pepper and whisk until melted and smooth.

3

Toast your bread in a single layer on a baking sheet in the oven until golden. If you like, butter your toast. Pour the cheese sauce over top and turn the oven up to broil; run the rarebit under the broiler for a few minutes, until golden and blistered on top. Serve immediately, or use as a base for sloppy Joes.

Cheesy Rarebit

Sloppy Joes

AuthorJulie

canola or olive oil, for cooking
1 onion, chopped
2-3 garlic cloves, crushed
1 lb. lean ground beef or bison
1 19 oz. (540 mL) can plum tomatoes (I like the San Marzano-style ones packed in tomato puree)
1/2 cup ketchup
2 Tbsp. brown sugar
1 Tbsp. cider vinegar
1 Tbsp. Worcestershire sauce
salt and pepper

1

In a large skillet set over medium-high heat, heat a drizzle of oil and sauté the onion for 3-4 minutes, until soft. Add the garlic and ground beef and cook, breaking it up with a spoon, until the meat is no longer pink.

2

Add the tomatoes, ketchup, brown sugar, vinegar, Worcestershire sauce and salt and pepper to taste and bring to a simmer; cook for 20-30 minutes, until the mixture thickens. Adjust the seasonings and serve hot over soft buns or cheesy Rarebit.

Ingredients

 canola or olive oil, for cooking
 1 onion, chopped
 2-3 garlic cloves, crushed
 1 lb. lean ground beef or bison
 1 19 oz. (540 mL) can plum tomatoes (I like the San Marzano-style ones packed in tomato puree)
 1/2 cup ketchup
 2 Tbsp. brown sugar
 1 Tbsp. cider vinegar
 1 Tbsp. Worcestershire sauce
 salt and pepper

Directions

1

In a large skillet set over medium-high heat, heat a drizzle of oil and sauté the onion for 3-4 minutes, until soft. Add the garlic and ground beef and cook, breaking it up with a spoon, until the meat is no longer pink.

2

Add the tomatoes, ketchup, brown sugar, vinegar, Worcestershire sauce and salt and pepper to taste and bring to a simmer; cook for 20-30 minutes, until the mixture thickens. Adjust the seasonings and serve hot over soft buns or cheesy Rarebit.

Sloppy Joes
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15 comments on “Cheesy Rarebit Sloppy Joes

  1. Erica B.
    May 22, 2013 at 9:59 pm

    Yum! I just made sloppy joes for dinner last night. I’ve served it over mac & cheese before but never thought about rarebit. I know what I’m making for lunch tomorrow. Thanks Julie!

  2. Ruth
    May 23, 2013 at 10:22 am

    Totally still love broccoli and cheese sauce. My Mom’s totally 80s recipe was broccoli, cauliflower and carrots steamed in the microwave and then halfway through you add a large scoop of cheese whiz and a can of cream of mushroom soup and cavendars seasoning. I still request it when home for “fancy” dinners (because it was a “fancy” dish not an everyday dish, you know?)

    Also thanks for the recipe for rarebit. Up til this point, when I had read the name in British novels etc., I had always thought it a dish of rabbit stew or some other such. I stand corrected.

  3. Laurie from Burnaby
    May 23, 2013 at 11:54 am

    I never thought of putting sloppy joe mixture on top of Welsh rarebit – thanks for that. Doubly drippy and good. 🙂
    Welsh rarebit came from the Welsh soldiers not wanting to eat the English rabbits (during the wars from way back) The Welsh consider rabbits to be vermin like rats and wouldn’t eat them. The army cooks slapped some cheese on bread for Welsh rabbit – and started thinning it out when the cheese became scarce.
    The English and Scottish liked the cheese toppings and renamed them Welsh rarebit so that everyone would eat it.
    This started way before the First World War
    There you go 🙂

  4. Julie
    May 23, 2013 at 12:02 pm

    Awesome Laurie! Thanks for the story. I knew bits of it, but not enough to tell it so eloquently! 🙂

  5. Shelli@howsitgoingeh?
    May 23, 2013 at 1:54 pm

    I am totally drooling right now…

  6. vanillasugarblog
    May 23, 2013 at 4:00 pm

    yeah this does sound really good.
    total comfort food!

  7. Carolyn
    May 23, 2013 at 5:46 pm

    My mom still makes broccoli and/or cauliflower smothered in cheese sauce. She makes the sauce from scratch, but I always cringe a bit (even thought it’s good) and think about why just serving the veggies lighly steamed isn’t good enough. I guess that makes me really granola! Thanks for the memories.

  8. Dana
    May 23, 2013 at 7:00 pm

    I hadn’t heard of Welsh Rarebit until I saw it in a kids cookbook. I tried it and thought it was pretty good. Their version was just topped with tomato slices. Yours looks amazing!

  9. Megan@Food and Whine
    May 23, 2013 at 7:27 pm

    My dad used to make rarebit and I loved it but I’ve never tried it with sloppy joes. What a great idea!

  10. Carol S-B
    May 23, 2013 at 8:16 pm

    Evil genius, that’s you.
    I may have mentioned this before.
    When you post something like this, is it true you bite your pinkie finger sideways, like Austin Powers?

  11. Laurie from Burnaby
    May 24, 2013 at 9:24 am

    I love Welsh rarebit – I like it with tomatoes, or onions, or bacon – and always add some Worcestershire sauce (pronounced Wooster sauce) or some HP
    I’m going to love it the way you cooked it, Julie 🙂
    And I loved the spinach gnudi, too. They look lovely – what a way to get veges into resistant children – I’ll try them on my grandchildren 😀

  12. Colleen
    May 24, 2013 at 10:37 am

    I remember Welsh Rarebit as one of the first things I learned to cook in Home Ec class – waayyy back in the day. Looks mighty yummy.

  13. lyn
    May 24, 2013 at 1:27 pm

    We ate it a lot as kids, but without the beer (being baptist) and added steamed asparagus, I have never had cheese sauce and toast by themselves. But I bet that is good too. But it is awesome with new asparagus.

  14. Fiona
    May 25, 2013 at 7:38 pm

    Ohhh, rarebit! I love it. We used to call it rabbit when I was a kid, and I guess we were close to accurate. I didn’t know that!

    I made cheese sauce the other day and put on leftover farfalle and broccoli. So kind of mac ‘n’ cheese, kind of broccoli and cheese sauce. The baby gobbled it up. My mom used to make broccoli and cheese sauce all the time when I was growing up. She still does, if I ask her.

  15. Hettar7
    May 28, 2013 at 8:10 pm

    How … Did … I … not know what Rarebit was before this post?!? ….. cause it sounds AWESOME!! Thanks for the recipe.

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