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Old 08-05-2013, 08:51 AM
Location: Central Midwest
3,401 posts, read 2,490,498 times
Reputation: 13703


In Central Illinois, the horseshoe sandwich was born years ago. It consists of toast on the plate, covered with meat, then French fries and covered with a cheese sauce which is like a Welsh Rarebit Sauce. Some people argue which should come first, the cheese sauce over the meat or the fries on top of the meat then cheese over all of it. I personally like cheese over the whole thing.

I personally don't eat these very often due to the calorie and fat content the sodium and the heaviness of the sandwich, but in this locale they are so popular and people come for miles and miles just to get the world famous sandwich at its birthplace. I know many of you won't care for this recipe, but there are those who might like it so I'm posting this thread.

Here is an great article about the horseshoe sandwich and the recipe for what is supposedly the original recipe.

Horseshoe Cheese Sauce.....one of the recipes claiming to be the original
1/2 C butter
2 T flour
1 1/4 C milk
1/4 t salt
1/8 pepper
1/2 t dry mustard
1 t worcestershire sauce
1 jar Olde English sharp cheddar spread

Horseshoe Sandwich, Horseshoe Sandwich History, Horseshoe Sandwich Recipe, How To Make A Horseshoe Sandwich, Pony Shoe Sandwich

Note: The Betty Crocker cookbook has a Welsh Rarebit Sauce recipe which:h can be used but it's better when amended a bit with the addition of Worcestershire Sauce.

Here's another recipe that the locals seem to like from the Junior League Cookbook:

1/2 cup butter or margarine
1/4 cup flour
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
2 cups light cream or half-and-half
1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper
2 cups shredded cheddar cheese
8 slices bread, toasted
Sliced or shaved ham, chicken or turkey or cooked ground beef patties
Cooked french fries
Melt butter in saucepan. Blend in flour and cook over low heat until mixture is smooth and bubbly. Remove from heat; stir in salt, pepper, cream, cayenne and cheese. Return to heat, stirring constantly to make a smooth sauce. Keep warm until sandwiches are assembled.
To assemble, place 2 slices of toast on serving plate. Top with meat of your choice and cover with cheese sauce. Mound french fries on top. Serve immediately.
Makes 4 servings.

Read more: Local bloggers rate the best Springfield horseshoes - Springfield, IL - The State Journal-Register

I personally like the white cheese version which is served at some of the local restaurants which cater to these sandwiches. There are versions of the horseshoe at some eating places which are horrible and should be avoided. Many places simply open a can of Nacho Cheese sauce and heat it, which makes a horrible concoction. The best places in Springfield, IL to eat these are D'Arcy's Pint and Dublin Pub. Some other places which some people think are the best are Top Cats, Ritz's ( I personally don't like this one), Westwoods, The Stadium Bar and Grill, Charlie Parker's Breakfast shoe. I personally think you can't beat the smooth white cheese sauce offered by D'Arcy's and Dublin Pub. I actually prefer the Dublin Pub as I think D'Arcy's frozen hamburger patties aren't up to par.

For those persons not hungry enough to eat a huge horseshoe which has two pieces of toast and two pieces of the meat, the ponyshoe is available. Keep in mind you can order about any kind of meat you want, and some places even have a breakfast horseshoe and some allow you to have hashbrowns instead of French fries. Buffalo chicken is really good on a horseshoe sandwich

When in the Midwest, go to Springfield, IL and try a horseshoe if you can somehow fit one in your diet!

Here's a recipe I sometimes use to make a white cheese sauce, although it's sometimes it's hard to find white cheddar cheese (I have substituted Monterey Jack or Muenster upon occasion or even casero Mexican Cheese for the white cheddar)

Horseshoe White Cheese Sauce
2 T butter
2 T all-purpose flour
1/4 t salt
1/8 t white pepper
1 c milk
1 C white cheddar cheese, shredded

In a medium saucepan, melt butter and stir in flour to make a roux. Stir in milk, salt, and pepper. Cook over medium heat, stirring constantly until sauce thickens. Add cheese and cook just until melted, stirring occasionally.


Happy Horseshoe to you! But wait a while before you get your cholesterol checked!
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Old 08-09-2013, 12:03 PM
Location: Canada
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Too fattening and high in cholestrol.
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Old 08-09-2013, 12:56 PM
5,340 posts, read 8,008,203 times
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I used to live in Illinois and Horseshoe sandwiches were served at some of the truckstops. I don't know anyone who ever ate one. Too much fat, too many calories.

One place served it on a plateful of potatoes fried in bacon grease.
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Old 08-09-2013, 01:25 PM
Location: Illinois
4,754 posts, read 4,306,030 times
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The horseshoe is an indulgence - not a regular meal If you grew up around them they seem normal, but I'm sure they seem strange/gross to those who have never had them before.

And potatoes fried in bacon grease are delicious
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Old 08-09-2013, 06:49 PM
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Seems no worse than eggs benedict with a side of home fries. Which really are tasty when done in bacon fat. That's what people used to have. Butter was rationed in WWII and expensive even after. There was always an old ceramic marmalade jar on the stovetop full of bacon fat. That's how you fried things.

Last edited by oaktonite; 08-09-2013 at 07:04 PM..
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Old 08-09-2013, 06:51 PM
35,121 posts, read 40,004,782 times
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These are incredibly delicious but not something you would want to eat even once a week. Once a month or every couple months no problem. They also serve a "Pony Shoe" which is a smaller version of the "Horse Shoe".
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Old 08-09-2013, 06:52 PM
Location: Los Angeles>Little Rock>Houston>Little Rock
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I'll take just the toast and rarebit sauce, thanks.
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Old 08-10-2013, 04:41 AM
Location: Florida (SW)
39,236 posts, read 18,774,996 times
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They sound delicious; thanks for sharing. Sounds like a cheesy country gravy or the sauce I make for baked mac and cheese--I even use the Worcestershire sauce and dry Coleman's mustard in that. I love sauces that start with a basic roux.
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Old 08-10-2013, 05:28 AM
Location: Central Midwest
3,401 posts, read 2,490,498 times
Reputation: 13703
These sandwiches definitely aren't something you want to eat very often for sure. Living in the birthplace of the horseshoe, it's an experience to see how people order these in mass at the restaurants which cater to these sandwiches. Most are not residents of the city, as most residents order something which is lighter and more heathy.

Certain dining places actually have grown in leaps and bounds by offering these famous and big sandwiches. I have never eaten a horseshoe, as the smaller ponyshoe is more than enough for me. I personally like shrimp horseshoes, but about any meat is available, with some being more expensive. If someone is a light eater or watching their fat, carbs and sodium, as I stated in the original post, you probably won't like this and don't eat it.
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Old 08-10-2013, 09:13 AM
Location: League City, Texas
2,896 posts, read 4,584,401 times
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I've only heard of them from watching the Food & Travel networks. I'm all for trying regional foods--sometimes I'll make them at home if I can't get to the specific area of the world at any particular time.
Maybe it's time to learn how to make a "Horseshoe". I already make the best lobster rolls in South Texas!
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