A taste for muffuletta


January 01, 2003|By Ellen Hawks | Ellen Hawks,SUN STAFF

Dan Evers of Woodburn, Ore., writes: "When I was stationed in Biloxi, Miss., in 1969-'70, we had a sandwich called [muffuletta]. It was made with crushed green olives, olive oil, meats and cheese. I cannot remember what the meats and cheeses were. Please, can you help me?"

Conrad and JoAnn Gilbert of Middle River responded. "Here is a really good recipe for a muffuletta sandwich. This recipe makes about six servings. When we make the sandwich, we heat it in the oven long enough to heat the meat and cheese.

This seems to make it a lot more tasty, and we serve it open-faced, if you like. Often in the New Orleans area, the sandwich is served heated. We hope this gets the taste buds going for everyone that tries it."

Muffuletta Sandwich

Makes 6 servings

1 1/2 pounds unsliced round loaf Italian bread

olive salad (see recipe)

4 ounces thinly sliced Genoa salami

4 ounces sliced provolone or mozzarella cheese

4 ounces sliced capicolla or fully cooked ham

lettuce leaves

Cut bread in half horizontally; cut a 1/2 -inch slice from cut side of one of the bread halves. Wrap the slice and use for another time. Drain olive salad, reserving liquid. Brush cut sides of the bread with some reserved liquid. Layer bottom of loaf with salami, half the olive salad, cheese, remaining olive salad and capicolla. Top with lettuce. Cover with bread top. Cut into wedges to serve.

Olive Salad

1/2 cup chopped pimento-stuffed olives

1/2 cup chopped pitted ripe olives

1/2 cup chopped celery

1/2 cup chopped mixed pickled vegetables

1/3 cup olive or salad oil

1/4 cup snipped parsley

3 tablespoons lemon juice

1 clove garlic, minced

1 teaspoon dried oregano, crushed

fresh pepper, to taste

To make olive salad, combine ingredients and refrigerate 8 hours or overnight, tossing once or twice.

Tester Laura Reiley's comments: "This is a zesty, flavorful sandwich that can turn any picnic into a party. Like an Italian cold-cut sub, the olive oil, olive juice and lemon give the bread a piquant vinaigrettelike flavor.

"This would work with any of the Italian meats -- prosciutto, mortadella, etc. -- but even roasted turkey breast would be enlivened by this chopped olive salad. Any leftover olive salad will keep in the refrigerator for weeks. A tip: If you are going to wait before eating this, use the lettuce to shield the bread from getting too damp on the top and bottom."

Recipe requests

Diane Tolley of Bend, Ore., wrote: "I recently visited Long Grove, Ill. I went to a place called the Apple Haus. Their claim to fame is `Home of the Uncle Johnny's Brown Bag Pie.' It is a super-moist pie and I want to make one. They told me they have to specially treat the bag. Could you find me a recipe making pies in brown paper bags?"

Geneva Sneed of Baltimore is seeking an "old-fashioned molasses pudding recipe."

If you are looking for a recipe or can answer a request for a hard-to-find recipe, write to Ellen Hawks, Recipe Finder, The Sun, 501 N. Calvert St., Baltimore, MD 21278.

If you send more than one recipe, please put each on a separate sheet of paper with your name, address and daytime phone number. Important: Please list the ingredients in order of use, and note the number of servings each recipe makes. Please type or print contributions.

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