Sunday, January 24, 2010

New Orleans Famous MUFFULETTA Sandwich ala MY YEAR ON THE GRILL

Hello foodies! The legendary MUFFULETTA ... It just sounds filling. And why not, three kinds of meat, 2 kinds of cheese and that incredible olive salad filling!

Oh, BTW, Dave here from MY YEAR ON THE GRILL. The resident cook in training that you may recognize from OUR KRAZY KITCHEN. Today is an exciting day for me, and Min has agreed to let me do a guest spot on her blog in honor of my special day. You see, the suburbs of Kansas City is hip and happening in a far out way, last night, my neighborhood celebrated "Mardi Gras in the Cul de Sac"! Counting drinks, 13 menu items, to feed 10 people... Laissez les bons temps rouler indeed! I got to spend the day cooking, have fun with my friends, and my proposal to take part in the 24,24,24 FOODBUZZ challenge was accepted. I want to thank Min for letting me make an extra post to her readers to tell you all about an amazing CAJUN inspired sandwich, perfect for your Mardi Gras party, or if the gods are in alignment, perfect for your Superbowl party featuring the New Orleans SAINTS (as I write this, the Saints are one game away from a birth in the big game)!

I have been in love with all things Cajun, and the food of New Orleans for a very long time. This year, my wife and I vacationed in New Orleans, and we took full advantage of our opportunity to enjoy a "muff" (as the locals call it) straight from the original store that made 'em famous... The Central Grocery Company. It is an incredible old world store. I imagine the look has not changed in 50 years. And that is it's charm. Hey, in researching this post, look what I found... CENTRAL GROCERY has it's own wikipedia listing (click HERE). I have been wanting to try to replicate the sandwich ever since. Thanks to a recipe from Katherine from the SMOKEY MOUNTAIN CAFE blog which you can find by clicking HERE.

Here's Katherine's instructions...

New Orleanian cook and cookbook author Chiqui Collier was kind enough to share this recipe and says, "It is my pleasure to send you the recipe for the original muffletta sandwich that was created by the grandfather of a lady I worked with 28 years ago." (Presumably that was Signor Salvadore.)

"The recipe for the olive salad is the exact way it was given to me. It makes over a gallon! I'm sure if you’ve tasted it or when you taste it, you won't want to cut it down. It stores very well in the refrigerator for many months and makes great gifts along with the recipe for the sandwich.

  • For the olive salad:
  • 1 gallon large pimento stuffed green olives, slightly crushed and well drained
  • 1 quart jar pickled cauliflower, drained and sliced
  • 2 small jars capers, drained
  • 1 whole stalk celery, sliced diagonally
  • 4 large carrots, peeled and thinly sliced diagonally
  • 1 small jar celery seeds
  • 1 small jar oregano
  • 1 large head fresh garlic, peeled and minced
  • 1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 jar pepperoncini, drained (small salad peppers) left whole
  • 1 pound large Greek black olives
  • 1 jar cocktail onions, drained

Combine all ingredients in a large bowl or pot and mix well. Place in a large jar and cover with 1/2 olive oil and 1/2 Crisco oil. Store tightly covered in refrigerator. Allow to marinate for at least 24 hours before using.

  • For the sandwich:
  • 1 round loaf Italian bread
  • 1/4 pound mortadella, thinly sliced
  • 1/4 pound ham, thinly sliced
  • 1/4 pound hard Genoa salami, thinly sliced
  • 1/4 pound Mozzarella cheese, sliced
  • 1/4 pound Provolone cheese,sliced
  • 1 cup olive salad with oil

Split a muffuletta loaf or a loaf of Italian bread horizontally. Spread each half with equal parts of olive salad and oil. Place meats and cheeses evenly on bottom half and cover with top half of bread. Cut in quarters. Enjoy!

Serves four timid dieters or two hearty New Orleanians. We don’t do Pilates in New Orleans, but you knew that didn’t you?

I made one sandwich, sliced the sandwich into a dozen thin appetizer size pieces and served as a pre-appetizer when guests arrived to pick up their drinks.

It certainly was a lot of trouble to make the olive spread. As suggested, I have plenty left, and will be enjoying this for awhile (or possibly will run out during my Superbowl party). there are a couple of commercially available jars of the salad already prepared for you. Most larger grocery stores will have jars for sale. The actual sandwich only took a few minutes to assemble. With the store bought olive salad, a fast and easy way to make an authentic New Orleans original!

So, thanks Min for letting me hangout with your friends today. Start planning your Superbowl party or Mardi Gras event today. This Sandwich will be welcome at either!

BTW, if you would like to learn more about my trip to the CENTRAL GROCERY COMPANY and my taste of an authentic New Orleans original, come to my original blog posting... I'm off to see the MUFFULETTA Store, the Wonderful Muffuletta Store of New Orleans. Here's a picture of my wife digging into her half while we picnicked in Jackson Square!

And please come take a look at my site today. I will have plenty to post about all the different foods... Everything that worked great (and maybe a couple that I need to revisit later). And see you all Thursday over at OUR KRAZY KITCHEN!

Dave here from MY YEAR ON THE GRILL. ..



Min said...

Wow! What a sandwich. Looks great, thanks for your post and congrats on your Foodbuzz event!

I don't have a container large enough to mix up that much olive salad...

Martha said...

Definitely looks like a great sandwich! Yummy!

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