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Saturday, March 29, 2008

sopressata paninis with roasted red pepper tapenade


I used to be very weirded out by any sandwich meat outside of turkey, but in the last couple of years have started to see that I've been missing a lot of deliciousness. Sopressata is one of those meats that I wish I had known about a long time ago. It's an italian cured pork sausage, made with black peppercorns, and just a slice or two can make a basic grilled cheese turn into an amazing experience. For this sandwich, I broil it with fresh mozzarella, some slices of black forest ham, and this red pepper and olive spread that is quickly made in the food processor.

Grocery list: sliced sourdough or italian bread, 2 slices of sopressata + 2 slices black forest ham (per sandwich), fresh ovaline mozzarella. For the tapenade: kalamata olives, fresh basil leaves, 2-3 roasted red peppers, olive oil, garlic, thyme, red wine vinegar.


Start by making the tapenade. Make sure you pit the olives first, and then put about 15 of them in the processor. Follow with the red peppers, 2-3 garlic cloves, a handful of basil leaves, a sprig of thyme leaves (remove the stems), and pulse for a few seconds until the olives and peppers are coursely chopped.


[Edit - forgot originally to include the rest of the directions for the tapenade here. After initially pulsing the olive mixture for a couple seconds, remove the lid and add a splash of red wine vinegar and stir to get the bigger chunks of olives down from the sides of the processor bowl. Return the lid; while pulsing the food processor, pour in about 1/4 cup of olive oil. You want the tapenade to have a thick consistency - spreadable, but not runny.


Next, turn on the broiler. Toast both sides of the sliced bread. Then, smear both sides of bread with the tapenade, and on one side of each sandwich place a few slices of fresh mozzarella. On the other side, put 2 slices of ham and 2 slices of sopressata. Return to the broiler until the cheese is bubbling and the top of the salami starts to crisp.


Anonymous said...

What you do after you chop veggies and herbs? How much olive oil you use ? how much vinegar? Do you apply heat to the ingredients?

KT said...

Hey there - sorry for being so vague in the original post. Once you've added the olives and herbs to the food processor, you only need to pulse for a few seconds, so the pieces of olive are still a bit too big for finished tapenade. Then, add just a splash of the vinegar and stir the contents of the bowl with a spatula. Put the lid back on, and get ready with your olive oil right in the pour spout - turn the processor back on, and while it's running, pour in about 1/4 cup of olive oil. If you pulse the olives too much before adding the liquid, the food processor can basically over-chop your olives. You don't want it completely smooth like hummus, but still with some texture from the olives, you know? No heat at all is necessary. This makes a good dip for pita chips, as part of an antipasto plate, etc. Let me know if you have other questions!