April 5, 2006
Baked Italian Sandwiches
Fulfilling a request from my good friend Emily is always a pleasure and I hope this sandwich will do the trick for her. Italian sandwiches can take many forms, but I was always a big fan of Italian subs back in the States that were loaded with salami, pepperoni, cheese and spicy peppers among other things. I was craving something like that when I made this sandwich the other night. Salami, Ham and Chorizo were my meats of choice (no pepperoni here) layered with fresh mozzerella slices and an olive, artichoke and red pepper salad I whipped up. Wrapped in foil and popped in the oven until the cheese melts, these will surely satisfy your spicy cheesy food lust.
The Olive Salad:
1/2 cup mixed marinated green and black olives (with herbs, if available), chopped
1 can artichoke hearts, drained, rinsed and chopped
2 red bell peppers, roasted and chopped (can use canned roasted red peppers)
splash of balsamic vinegar
splash of olive oil
1 Tbsp chopped fresh basil, or pinch of dried
pinch of dried oregano (can leave out if olives are marinated with herbs)
To roast the bell peppers: Drizzle peppers with a bit of olive oil and put under the broiler and broil until the skin starts to turn black. Rotate peppers until all sides are black. This takes maybe 20-30 minutes. Remove from the oven and place in a ziploc bag or paper bag for 10 minutes or until cool enough to handle. Remove blackened skin from peppers, it should slide off fairly easily. Chop the peppers and place in a bowl. Combine the chopped artichokes and olives with the red peppers and the rest of the ingredients. Mix well.
This makes enough for maybe 6 sandwiches, so leftovers could be served as a side dish or antipasto. Mix in some small cubes of fresh mozzerella and combine with arugula for a tasty salad. I used the leftovers as a pizza topping the next day. I love all the uses for this!
For the Sandwich:
1 Tbsp pesto
sliced chorizo or pepperoni
sliced fresh mozzerella or provolone, or combo of your choice
bread of your choice, I used a baguette, as usual.
Spread some pesto (or just a little oil and vinegar) on the bread. Layer on the meats and cheese. Top with large spoonfuls of the olive salad, pressing down with the top slice of bread to secure the sandwich. Wrap the sandwich in foil and bake for 10-15 minutes at 400 degrees F (200 degrees C) or until the cheese is melted and bread is a little crunchy.
Simple but heavenly, I assure you.