Tuesday, August 14, 2018

Cheesy Muffaletta a la Panini

A Muffuletta sandwich, grilled on a Panini.

Just what is a Muffaletta? It’s a sandwich of New Orleans, originally made with cheese and meat, such as salami and ham, and “Tapenade,” tangy olive spread, the crown flavor of the sandwich.

Many would say that this “salad in a sandwich,’ also known as Muffuletta, is very similar to a Hero, but let’s not be heard saying this out loud, we wouldn’t want to upset anyone.

The Muffaletta—a giant meat sandwich—was invented about 100 years ago, by Sicilian Immigrants that settled in New Orleans, Louisiana. But for this newly-twisted sandwich recipe, the tapenade has been given a modern taste, with the addition of pickled jalapeños added to the olive spread. And then this homemade sandwich is toasted on a Panini grill, for a fabulously wunderlicious sandwich that will have you humming with every bite.

Come; take a comfortable seat at our cozy table. Dinner is served!

Recipe makes 6 large individual Muffaletta Paninis

STEPS 1 (olive tapenade):

1 cup black olives (measured before chopping), finely chopped

1 cup green olives pimento stuffed (measured before chopping), finely chopped

1 cup marinated artichoke hearts (measured before chopping), finely chopped

1/2 cup chopped carrots

1/2 cup chopped celery (1-rib)

1/4 cup capers (measured before chopping), finely chopped

1/4 cup [hot] jalapeños (measured before chopping), finely chopped

2 [large] garlic cloves, finely chopped

1 teaspoon Italian seasoning

1/4 teaspoon celery salt

1/4 cup pomegranate vinegar

1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil

In a non-reactive bowl mix all ingredients until well blended. Cover the bowl and chill for at least 4 hours or overnight. This will allow the flavors to meld into deliciousness.

STEPS 2 (putting the sandwich together):

6 sandwich rolls (such as Dutch Crunch)

Olive Tapenade from steps 1

12 slices Sopressata salami

12 slices Mortadela

6-12 slices roasted red bell pepper (depending on size)

6 slices Swiss cheese

6 slices Provolone cheese

6 slices jalapeño jack cheese

Butter or rendered bacon grease or olive oil for brushing on outside of bread (top and bottom)

  • Half/split bread lengthwise and spread some of the tapenade mixture evenly on both sides of the bread.
  • Begin layering: beginning and ending with cheese (your choice of cheese), and the middle layer with the roasted pepper and slice of cheese (cheese of choice), close the sandwich.
  • Generously Brush the top and bottom of each sandwich with butter, or rendered bacon grease or olive oil, or a combination thereof.
  • Place onto a pre-heated Panini grill (a George Foreman grill was used to grill these homemade sandwiches), and cook according your grill’s instructions (with the George Foreman grill it took 4-6 minutes cooking time). You want the sandwich to cook to a nice golden color and the cheese should be melted, and when you tap on the bread it should yield a nice hollow thump.

Enjoy with a side of potato salad or green salad.

Cook with heart; eat with gusto. Buen Provecho!

About the Writer

HomeRearedChef is a writer for BrooWaha. For more information, visit the writer's website.
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9 comments on Cheesy Muffaletta a la Panini

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By Barbara MacDonald on November 20, 2012 at 09:35 am

I knew this sounded Italian...(Sicilian)...with the Salami and Mortadella I have made a similar one before, and yes I used my George Foreman grill too...yummy... I have been meaning to ask you if you have ever seen "Like Water For Chocolate" amazing subtitled film...but you speak Spanish also I think, so you could just enjoy it in Spanish...(Como Agua Para Chocolate) on UTube...I have this movie and just love it...

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By melanie jean juneau on November 20, 2012 at 10:51 am

This is not just an ordinary sandwhich! looks srumptious

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By HomeRearedChef on November 20, 2012 at 01:31 pm

OH, Barbara, we have the movie, Like Water for Chocolate (and the book) and I LOVE it! We also have Chocolat, Tortilla Soup, Spanglish, No Reservations... I think we have a very nice collection of movies that highlight FOOD! I know, I am in-love with cooking and eating. There is no help for me. lol!

When I am sad, cooking lifts my spirits. :)

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By HomeRearedChef on November 20, 2012 at 01:33 pm

I can tell you, Melanie, that this sandwich was truly scrumptious, but very rich. It is difinitely meant to be shared, for some of us. :)

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By Barbara MacDonald on November 20, 2012 at 01:37 pm

We have that in common Virginia...nothing better than cooking with love for our family and friends...(maybe is an Italian thing too)...I use to bake when ever I was upset...somehow getting my hands into the dough helped...:-)

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By souschef on November 20, 2012 at 01:39 pm

Thank you!

I relish any opportunity to take out my sandwich press. Okay... yes, it is a George Forman also, but it does the job very nicely!

I like your version of the tapenade! It should have a little heat.

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By HomeRearedChef on November 20, 2012 at 01:39 pm

I think we are kindred spirits, Amiga. It is a real pleasure to know you! :)

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By HomeRearedChef on November 20, 2012 at 01:41 pm

Souschef, the heat you add is totally up to you~more or less to make it perfect. And we love our George Forman grill/press, it has proven very convenient.

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By Barbara MacDonald on November 20, 2012 at 02:05 pm

I totally agree...I am very happy you are writing on Broo is wonderful getting to know you.

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