Look at that. I mean, really look at it. Is your mouth watering yet? Pretzel sub rolls, crisp-sauteed mushrooms, juicy meatballs, and marinara, all smothered with a nice medium cheddar. The sandwich is one of those that is truly enormous, and it hurts you to eat it all, but you can't stop eating it because it's so good.
Want to know the surprising part?
There's no meat involved whatsoever.
Don't go away, meat lovers! I promise you, it's not just an illusion that those meatballs look like real meat. Gimme Lean Sausage is a truly delicious stand-in for the real thing. I'm pretty sure that if you didn't tell someone it was fake, they wouldn't know the difference. I also used this for a stuffing recipe on Thanksgiving and it was awesome. Did I mention how low in calories it is? 2 ounces for 60 calories. Good thing, too, because this sub involves 1/2 the package.
Anyway, back to the main point: You know you want it.
Vegetarian Meatball Parmesan Subs (from A Thought for Food)
-1 package of Gimme Lean “Ground Sausage Style”
-1/2 small yellow onion, minced
-2 cloves garlic, minced
-3 tbsp olive oil
-2 Sub rolls
-Cheddar cheese, approximately 10-12 thin slices
-1/2 cup jarred marinara sauce
-1 cup sliced crimini mushrooms
-Fresh Parsley, chopped
1. In a bowl, mix the Gimme Lean, onion, and garlic with your hands, until combined. Roll out into 1 1/2 inch meatballs.
2. Add the oil to a large pan and set over a medium-high flame. Once heated, add the meatballs to the pan and cook until it has browned on one side. Using a spatula, flip over the meatballs and let the other side brown. Once this happens, gently toss the meatballs around in the pan until they get a little color on all sides. Turn off the burner and transfer the meatballs to a plate.
3. Add the mushrooms to the same pan that you used to cook the meatballs and set the burner to medium-high heat. Do not crowd the mushrooms. Cook them until they have gotten crispy on the outside, but not burnt. Transfer to a bowl.
4. To assemble the subs, cut the submarine bread almost completely in half, lengthwise. Line each side of the bread with 3 or 4 slices of cheddar cheese. Fill each one with 5 or 6 meatballs and top with the marinara sauce. Add another 2 or 3 slices of cheese on top of the meatballs.
5. Place the sandwiches on a baking sheet lined with aluminum foil and place the pan under the broiler in the oven until the cheese has melted, being careful not to burn the sandwich.
6. Take the pan out of the oven and top each with mushrooms and a sprinkle of chopped parsley. Serve immediately.
-Makes 2 very large subs (and probably some extra meatballs)