Thursday, February 11, 2010

By Any Other Name

A muffuletta would be called a muffaletta, aka a New Orleans sandwich.  When I stated last week that I was going to try making one for Superbowl Sunday, Linda at Diva Weigh asked me to share my recipe.  She must have a lot of faith in me because I hadn't even said if it was good or not - lol!  If I was a great food blogger like Biz, this post would be chock full of photos of all my ingredients and each stage of preparation.  I'm not so all you're getting is a couple pics of the finished product but I think you'll enjoy. 

The muffuletta/muffaletta has 3 main parts:  The bread (muffletta is actually the name of the bread), the olive salad, and the filling.  I wanted to try making everything from scratch so that's what I went for, but I will say, in the future I would definitely consider buying a nice loaf of Italian Boule bread and using that simply because it would be a time saver.

So, for my bread I used a recipe (which I am not going to post here) for Italian Boule.  Instead of making 1 big loaf, I decided to make 2 small loaves since it was just Mr. Helen and me eating. In any case, you want to have a 15-16 oz. Italian Boule bread or two 7-8 oz. small boules.

The Olive Salad
2 cups pimento stuffed green olives
1 cup pitted black olives
1 1/2 cups ready made Giardiniera (for me, it turned out to be a med. size jar)
2 T capers
3 cloves garlic, minced
1/4 cup celery, minced
1 T Italian flat leaf parsley, chopped
2 green onions, thinly sliced
2 T jarred diced pimento
2 tsp. dried oregano
1 tsp. crushed red pepper flakes
3 T red wine vinegar
1/2 tsp. Kosher salt
1 to 1 1/2 cups extra virgin olive oil.

You can chop everything by hand, or do like I did which was to pulse ingredients one at a time in my food processor, then dump into a large bowl.  So, I individually pulsed (so it would be a bit chunky), each type of olives and the Giardinera - dump into bowl.  Then I minced the garlic, celery and parsley in the processor and dumped into the bowl.  Then I sliced the green onions into the bowl, measured in the diced pimento, oregano, pepper flakes, red wine vinegar and kosher salt.  Then I gave it all a stir with a big spoon to combine it well.  When finished, pour the extra virgin olive oil over it all (the mixture should be covered) and put it in a large non-reactive bowl or jar to sit.  You should make this ahead of time by at least a day or two but up to a week before you want to use it.  This made enough to fill one big quart jar and another half quart jar.  Here is some of mine in a jar:

Sandwich Filling (enough for large bread - for small breads divide equally)
4 oz. capicola ham
4 oz. Genoa salami
4 oz. mortadella
4 oz. provolone cheese
4 oz. mozzarella cheese

All these ingredients should be thinly sliced.

To assemble the sandwich:

Slice your boule in half.  Take some of the bread out of the center of each side leaving a nice rim for the fillings to sit in.  Pour a bit of the oil off the olive salad into a small dish.  Using a pastry brush, brush the seasoned oil onto each side of the bread.  Fill the hollows of the bread with your olive salad (~1-2 cups salad).  Layer meats and cheese anyway you'd like on the bottom half then put the top back on. Wrap the sandwich tightly with plastic wrap and let sit in the refrigerator for 1-2 hours to allow the flavors to meld.  When ready to serve, unwrap and slice into triangles.  Here is what my finished sandwich looked like when I cut it in half.

Here is a shot that shows the top of the bread a bit better

This was made on one of my small loaves.  My husband ate half of one and I ate half of the half:

It was yummy.  I will definitely make this again and again.  I think I might have mentioned that Mr. Helen told me he wants this to be our "go to the beach" sandwich this summer.  Which means I don't get to stop at the Italian grinder shop and buy a sammy anymore.  I made the second loaf on Monday night and he at half of that Tuesday night for dinner and the rest on Wednesday for his lunch. I guess he likes it a lot.

I still have enough olive salad to do one more sandwich if I want but honestly it tastes so good that I might use it as a spread on any type of bread or sandwich.

If you decide to give it a go, I hope you enjoy it as much as we did.


  1. I'm an oddity; I HATE olives. Sorry. I'm sure it's good, though. ;)

  2. Wow, I've never even heard about some of those ingredients - I must live in another world. But I LOVE olives and just reading this made my mouth water. I'm going to have to see if I can find Giardiniera as I've never heard of it before today. But I'm pretty sure Mr. Sandra would just love that sandwich.
    Thanks for sharing it Helen!

  3. HOLY COW does that look good!!! You're making this "no carb" girl salivate on her computer keyboard!!!

  4. Thanks for sharing! The olive salad alone looks good! Then you put it on a sammy with some homemade bread!
    I'm gonna try this.


  5. That looks fabulous! Yummy yum yum. And that boule? You are quite the baker.