This sloppy joe is native to New Jersey, where the term—elsewhere reserved for tomato saucy ground meat on a bun—means something different entirely. Here, it is a cold, triple-decker, rye bread sandwich, stacked high with meat, cheese, cabbage slaw, and so much Russian dressing. I like turkey and Swiss, but feel free to sub in your favorites, from roast beef with cheddar to ham with provolone. —Emma Laperruque
slices NY deli-style rye bread (as thin as possible)
Sliced turkey, roasted or smoked
Sliced Swiss cheese
Pickles, for serving
Toss the cabbage with a pinch of salt in a small bowl. Let hang out while you make the Russian dressing: Combine the mayo, minced pickles, and ketchup in another small bowl. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Add just enough Russian dressing to the cabbage to wilt, like a coleslaw.
Build the sandwiches. Butter the bread slices so that all sides facing the interior of the sandwich are taken care of (so, the top and bottom slices of bread will be buttered on one side; the middle will be buttered on both). Stack in this order: bread, turkey, Swiss, Russian slaw, more Russian for good measure, bread, turkey, Swiss, Russian slaw, more Russian for good measure, bread. Slice in half and serve with a pickle.
Emma was the food editor at Food52. She created the award-winning column, Big Little Recipes, and turned it into a cookbook in 2021. These days, she's a senior editor at Bon Appétit, leading digital cooking coverage. Say hello on Instagram at @emmalaperruque.