Springfield Horseshoe Sandwich
The Springfield Horseshoe Sandwich was created at the Old Leland Hotel in 1928 by Joe Schweska and Steve Tomko. For years, the only recipe that existed was “a pinch of this and a little of that.” It wasn’t until a Christmas edition of the State Journal Register in 1939 that Chef Schweska finally revealed the secret.
The name “horseshoe” was derived from the shape of the cut of ham used in the original sandwich. The french fries represent the nails of the shoe, and the sizzle platter represents the hot anvil.
Ingredients (the sauce is key):
2 egg yolks
½ cup beer
2 tablespoons butter
3 cups grated sharp Old English Cheddar or Colby Longhorn cheese
1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
¼ teaspoon dry mustard
½ teaspoon salt
1 dash cayenne pepper
Beat the egg yolks and beer together. Melt the butter and cheese over boiling water, stirring in one direction only with a wooden spoon. Add the seasonings. Stirring constantly, add the beer and egg mixture a little at a time. Keep the mixture piping hot as you stir, but don’t let it bubble. Constant stirring and the very best cheese will yield a smooth, uncurdled mixture. Serves four.
The sandwich is made by laying two pieces of toast on a preheated platter, then placing the meat on the toast, covering the entire sandwich with the cheese sauce, and circling the platter with french fries. Add a dash of paprika for color and you have created a horseshoe.
Top photo by Springfield CVB