One of my favorite memories growing up was going to the Dodger games. For most people, they looked forward to a Dodger dog, a bag of peanuts (from the peanut guy who still, to this day, throws peanuts to everyone), and a frozen malt. Dodger games were a high priority, but eating at the stadium was not on our family’s agenda. Our tradition was either dinner at Little Joe’s or a French Dip sandwich from Pillippes, with a side of pickles, and a bag of chips. Yup…so good.

Sadly, Little Joe’s is no longer around. When I was pregnant with Eli(17 years ago), I CRAVED their salad and their raviolis w/bolognese. As I write this, I can still taste their signature recipe on my tongue. Oh, how I miss that place; the tacky red booths, sawdust on the floor, the bread, and the “take out” deli where my dad and I would buy boxes and boxes of raviolis to freeze for future meals.

Little Joe’s may be a part of my past, but Phillipes is still a huge part of our present. We have broken tradition a bit. Phillippes is not simply a pre-game meal. It’s where we go when they have a day off from school(sometimes taking the metro directly to Union Station) or a late night snack. NO ONE makes a French Dip sandwich quite like Phillippes. It’s that good. So when I bought my slow cooker a few months back, French Dips were high on the list. What makes a really good French dip is the bread and the au jus. This recipe is a close second to the original and it is so well received by my kids, that I make extra just so I can pack sandwiches in their lunch boxes the next day.

This week my family will be eating lots of good stuff:

Sunday: 8/31/14
Beef Dip Sandwiches
Sumi Slaw
Chocolate Chip Cookies Ice Cream Sandwiches (put ice cream in the middle of these and freeze for an hour)

Monday: 9/1/14
Green Minestrone
Scallion Pancakes

Tuesday: 9/2/14
Salmon Teriyaki
Spinach Salad (dressing to follow)
Brown Rice

Wednesday: 9/3/14
Spaghetti alla Carbonara
Grilled Chicken Sausages
This salad (meatless)

Thursday: 9/4/14
Grilled Lemon Chicken (boneless)
Vegetable Tian
Chocolate Hazelnut Cake

Friday: 9/5/14
Eli’s first Varsity Football Game – Go Dolphins (eating at the Food Trucks)

Saturday: 9/6/14
Happy Birthday to Mitch (make reservations at Mastro’s Malibu)

Slow Cooker French Dip Sandwiches

5 lbs. chuck roast
4 cups water, filtered
1 cup Wheat Free Tamari
2 teaspoons dried oregano
1 teaspoons garlic powder
1 teaspoon onion powder
2 bay leaves
10 whole peppercorns
french rolls (the soft find)

• pat roast dry with paper towels. place in bowl of the slow cooker.
• in a small glass bowl, combine dry ingredients. rub mixture over .
• add bay leaves, peppercorns, water, and Tamari. cover and cook on low for 6 – 8 hours or until the meat is fork tender.
• remove meat to a wooden board and let rest for a few minutes.
• pour au jus into a small stock pot and bring to a boil. keep boiling until reduced by half the amount of liquid.
• while sauce is reducing, shred meat using two forks. discard fat.
• place a mesh strainer over a glass bowl, and strain the au jus.
• warm and cut rolls in half. dip cut side open into the au jus. pile bread with meat. serve a little sauce on the side.