Muffaletta with olive tapenade is a sandwich that originated in New Orleans at Central Grocery where it is still made today. It’s loaded with Italian salami and a Creole olive salad so it is packed with flavor. It should be prepared an hour or so ahead of time to allow the flavors to come together, which makes it a great sandwich for picnics! We adapted this recipe from New Orleans master chef Emeril Lagasse.
Serves 4 – 6
1 large round bread loaf, 8- to 9-inches in diameter
1/2 cup We Olive Black Olive Tapenade
1/2 cup We Olive Spicy Green Olive Tapenade
1/4 cup We Olive Fresh Garlic Olive Oil
2 tablespoons minced shallots
2 tablespoons finely chopped celery
2 tablespoons minced fresh flat-leaf parsley
1 1/2 teaspoons freshly ground black pepper
4 ounces salami, thinly sliced
4 ounces cappicola, thinly sliced
4 ounces mortadella, or deli ham, thinly sliced
4 ounces fresh mozzarella cheese, thinly sliced
4 ounces provolone, thinly sliced
3 tablespoons Extra Virgin Olive Oil
Salt and pepper
Pickled pepperoncini, for garnish
Make the olive salad. In a bowl, combine both tapenades with the garlic olive oil, shallots, celery, parsley and black pepper and mix well. Cover and refrigerate until ready to use. The salad can be refrigerated for up to 1 week.
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Slice bread loaf in half, horizontally, and remove enough of the center to make room for fillings. Layer the olive salad, meats and cheeses on the bottom half of bread, drizzle with olive oil, and season to taste with salt and pepper. Replace top half of bread and wrap the sandwich in aluminum foil.
Bake until muffaletta is warmed throughout and cheese is melted, about 30 minutes.The sandwich can also be served at room temperature. Allow it to sit for at least 1 hour for the flavors to marry and the oil to soak into the bread. Cut in pieces to serve.