It's an indisputable fact that the pungent layers of olive salad are what makes New Orleans' famous muffuletta sandwich so unique and delicious. We decided to experiment with that concept a bit and came up with a Mediterranean version. We made a fresh basil vinaigrette and combined it with fresh and sun-dried tomatoes, roasted red peppers and onion, then layered it with a fabulous selection of Italian cold cuts on crusty ciabatta bread. Not quite a muffuletta, but every bit as tasty.
- 1 loaf ciabatta bread (about 6 x 12 inches)
- 1/4 lb prosciutto, thinly sliced
- 1/4 lb sopressata, thinly sliced
- 1/4 lb Genoa salami, thinly sliced
- 1/4 lb mortadella, thinly sliced
- 1/4 lb asiago cheese, thinly sliced
- For the relish:
- 2 medium tomatoes, seeded and cut into 1/4-inch dice
- 3/4 cup sun-dried tomatoes, chopped
- 1/2 cup sweet onion, chopped
- 1/2 cup roasted red pepper, chopped (about 1 medium)
- 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
- 2 tablespoons red wine vinegar
- 1 clove garlic, chopped
- 1 cup loosely packed fresh basil leaves
- Salt and freshly ground black pepper
Make the relish by combining the tomatoes, sun dried tomatoes, onion and roasted red pepper in a medium bowl. Season to taste with salt and pepper.
Add the olive oil, red wine vinegar, garlic and basil to the work bowl of a food processor or chopper. Pulse until the basil and garlic are finely chopped. Add to the tomato mixture, combine well and set aside for 15 minutes.
Slice the ciabatta bread into top and bottom halves and spread the relish evenly over both. Layer the cold cuts and cheese on top of the relish and put the halves together. Wrap in foil or plastic wrap and set aside for 15 minutes to allow the relish to soak into the bread a bit. Slice crosswise into six pieces and serve.
Makes 6 servings