1.Remove silverside from packaging and rinse under running water. Immerse in a large saucepan of water with the bay leaves and peppercorns.
2.Cover and simmer for 1 hour. Drain and allow meat to rest and cool while you make the sauerkraut (below).
3.To assemble, spread Dijon mustard generously over the bread. Lay 2 tbsp of sauerkraut on 6 slices. Slice the silverside. Stack the meat, gherkins and cheese over the sauerkraut, then top with remaining rye bread.
Sauerkraut (makes 6 cups)
4.Heat oil in a frying pan. Add the onion and garlic, then cook over a low heat until translucent. Add cabbage, salt, vinegar, cider and water.
5.Simmer for 30 minutes until liquid is absorbed. Leave to cool before serving.
Mike’s Top Tips: Traditional sauerkraut takes days to ferment, but this is my secret recipe for a quick and easy version that tastes just as good. Choose a reputable butcher when buying the silverside – not only will the meat be of a better quality, but the butcher would have most likely used a complex pickling recipe, which will translate into a fuller-flavoured meat. To put your own spin on the Reuben Van de Elzen, you could make an open sandwich and melt the cheese on top. You could also put the whole sandwich in to a toaster for an incredible toastie. Yum! – Mike Van de Elzen