An hour’s the limit, 184pp.
by ‘Fast Ed’ Halmagyi
Ebury Press, North Sydney, 2010
Cooking on page 32
‘Fast Ed’ Halmagyi is best known for his cooking segment on the Better Homes and Gardens lifestyle television series. His style is enthusiastic and infectious. His aim is to keep delicious food accessible, affordable and achievable.
This cookbook, his third of four, is great for busy cooks because every recipe takes 60 minutes or less. The recipes are tempting, oh so tempting. So I was glad the choice of what to make first was dictated by page 32.
I borrowed this book from the library, because the page-32 recipe is for an Italian sandwich I’ve wanted to make for many years. The book is filled with great recipes. Luckily, last weekend I saw a copy for $10 in a second-hand bookstore. I might just have to own it.
1 cup pimiento-stuffed green olives, chopped (1 cup = 150g pimiento-stuffed green olives)
4 eschalots, diced finely
1 stick celery, diced finely
1/2 bunch parsley leaves, chopped finely
1/2 cup mayonnaise
2 tsp Tabasco sauce
4 ciabatta rolls, split
180g shaved mortadella
180g shaved leg ham
140g sliced mozzarella cheese
140g sliced provolone cheese
gherkin, to serve
Combine the olives, eschalots, celery, parsley, mayonnaise and Tabasco in a bowl, then set side to steep for 10 minutes.
Spread both sides of the rolls with the olive salad, then top with alternating layers of mortadella, ham, mozzarella and provolone. Serve with gherkins. Serves 4.
How it played out
Except for using my homemade sourdough bread, instead of ciabatta, I made a half a batch of this as written. I also used my unsweetened homemade mayonnaise (recipe at the bottom of this post).
I bought the meats and mozzarella and provolone cheeses at Supabarn in the city. The guy who runs the cheese department there says he has 460 varieties on the shelf and I believe it. Lots of great choices. The mozzarella is one he recommends, saying it holds its shape and is loaded with taste. He was right. Had to laugh, though, at the checkout counter. The price on the cheese was $9.08, but it rang up as $908.
Oh wow, what a sandwich. Poor John and I loved these for lunch.
I’ve heard of muffulettas for years—they are extremely popular in New Orleans—but never had the chance to try one. They are huge, packed with flavour and deliciously messy. The filling oozed all over my hands and down my chin and arms. Perfect!
You can bet I’ll make these again. By the way, I’ve read that there is an actual muffuletta loaf of bread. It’s similar to focaccia, but I reckon my sourdough worked just fine.
Be sure to check out my travel blog. Here’s a post about some meals we had in India.