Taking the classic Philly cheesesteak and adding an Indian fusion touch, inspired by Little Sicily Pizza II (#IYKYN). A sandwich that is [Phila] love for a city I’ve grown to love.
Philadelphia has it’s own charm that stems from it’s diverse population, authentic food scene, and laid-back, artisitc culture. I’ll skip the sports talk here as it may get heated being a hard core DC sports fan.
I used to be terrified of Philly growing up for some reason, but I knew I was meant to love it once my sister chose to fulfill her dental school dreams there. Visiting her (hi bff ♥) really opened up my eyes to how amazing this city is, and how much I have yet to explore. The food scene is incredible: so many mom & pop shops and restaurants that cater to every flavor profile! BYOB spots. Breweries. Dog Cafes. Soft Pretzels. And of course, the infamous cheesesteak. My favorite cheesesteak spot is Little Sicily Pizza II which finds it self right near the harbor. Not Little Siciliy Pizza One, but TWO. Get that right. Skip the pizza and go straight for the spicy chicken, paneer, or egg sandwiches. It’s owned by an Indian family that knows its’ spices and its’ audience. While you absolutely have to go there for the real stuff, I couldn’t help but make my own version at home.
I did my research & surveying of true Philadelphians to make sure I made this “authentic” as possible (where I could help it) so it qualifies as a cheesesteak. The hoagie roll, the cheese, and preparation all goes hand in hand. Tested, tried, and critiqued by my friends and family, I’m really proud of this recipe.
Can’t wait for you all to enjoy it to get a little taste of Philly love in your own homes. 🙂
PREP: 15 minutes TOTAL: 40 minutes YIELD: 6 servings
- 6 6″ Hoagie Rolls
- 1 lb. of Paneer (I used store bought Nanak’s paneer from the freezer aisle!)
- 1 medium Red Onion, diced small
- 4 Garlic Cloves, minced
- 1½ tbsp. Grated Ginger
- 3-4 Thai Green Chilies, chopped (optional)
- 3 tbsp. Soy Sauce
- 1 tsp. Red Chili Powder
- 1 tsp. Turmeric
- 1 tsp. Garam Masala
- 1/2 tsp. Coriander Powder
- 1 tsp. Ground Black Pepper
- ½ tsp. Salt (adjust per taste)
- 12 Provolone Cheese Slices
- 1 tbsp. Olive Oil
- Chopped Cilantro
- Prepare Paneer: Cut paneer into 1 inch cubes. Add cubes into food processor, and pulse until paneer is crumbled into pebble size pieces. Set aside.
- In a large non-stick skillet over medium-to-low heat, heat 1 tbsp. Olive Oil. Add in diced Red Onion, Garlic, Ginger, and Thai Green Chilies. Sauté for 2-3 minutes.
- Sprinkle in Red Chili Powder, Turmeric, Garam Masala, Coriander Powder, Ground Black Pepper, and Salt. Mix and sauté for 1-2 minutes.
- Add Soy Sauce and Crumbled Paneer. Mix all ingredients together thoroughly.
- Turn off heat, and mix in chopped Cilantro. Set mixture aside.
- Heat up stove-top grill or other non-stick skillet over low heat.
- Butter the inside of the hoagie roll and toast on grill or skillet for 10 seconds. Set aside.
- Split paneer mixture evenly for 6 servings. Place one serving on the grill or skillet to heat.
- Place 2 provolone cheese slices over top of mixture and let melt. You can cover the mixture with a lid to build steam so the cheese melts faster!
- Transfer mixture over to hoagie roll.
- Repeat steps 7, 8, 9, and 10 for remaining servings.
- Serve and enjoy!
#TashTip: You can customize the spiciness of each serving by adding/removing green chilies. Feel free to freeze the mixture for up to 2 months for later use. You can even eat the mixture on it’s own as Paneer Burji for a quick brunch!