Introducing the muffaletta
I don’t think a bad dish has come out of New Orleans, Louisiana.
The majority of NOLA cuisine is an infusion of French, Spanish, and Caribbean flavors, however this sandwich was conceived by the Italians.
Like many Italian foods, muffaletta’s are made to serve numerous people and are composed of large amounts of cheese, olives, and Italian cold cuts.
Traditionally they are made with Sicilian sesame bread, muffuleta, which is a large crusty round white bread that is cut horizontally and heated briefly before eating.
Luckily for me, Buenos Aires has a huge Italian culture and many of these items are found at a reasonable price. It’s so simple to throw together, I think it will be my new go-to recipe when I’m hosting and feeling lazy.
- celery, apio
- carrot, zanahoria
- mix of green and black olives, aceitunas negros y verdes
- olive oil, aceite de oliva
- muffuleta bread, pan de campo
- 10 pieces of cooked salami, 10 trozos de salami cocinados
- 10 pieces of mortadella, 10 trozos de mortadela
- 10 pieces of ham, 10 trozos de jamón
- 8 pieces of provolone, 8 trozos de queso provolone
The olive salad is the most important part of the muffaletta providing lots of flavor and texture.
I am a GIANT LOVER of black olives so I prefer to use a mix of both black and green. You can mince OR throw them in a food processor for about 5-8 seconds. Repeat with 1 carrot and two stalks of celery to add some crunch. DON’T process the celery and carrot for too long or you will lose the crunch. Mix everything together in a bowl, season with salt & pepper, and add a few big splashes of olive oil. This is the ONLY condiment on the sandwich, ABSOLUTELY NO MAYO OR MUSTARD ALLOWED, so make sure its super moist. Time to build the sandwich. Cut the bread horizontally and remove some of the insides. Put a VERY generous layer of olive salad on the bottom piece and then start stacking your cold cuts and cheese. Finish with a second layer of olive salad and the top piece of bread. Place in the oven to warm through and serve immediately. Cut into 6 or so pieces and serve with pickled veggies on the side.
*Feel free to construct the sandwich an hour before eating to allow the olive salad to soak into the bread. Surprisingly it doesn’t make it soggy.
*Many people use swiss cheese in replace of provolone and also add capicola. I substituted the capicola for herbed salami in addition to regular salami. Muuuuuy rico.