Sunday, July 22, 2007

The Muffuletta

From Wikipedia: The Muffuletta is a type of Sicilian bread, as well as a sandwich in New Orleans, Louisiana, which is made with that bread. The muffuletta sandwich originated in 1906 at Central Grocery, which was operated by Salvatore Lupo, a Sicilian immigrant. The sandwich is popular with city natives and visitors, and has been described as "one of the great sandwiches of the world." Central Grocery still serves the sandwich using the original recipe. Other variations are served throughout the city. The locals have differing opinions on which shop serves the best muffuletta. I decided to go right to the originator, The Central Grocery, to give this sandwich a try. At Central Grocery a circular loaf of seeded Italian bread, about 10 inches in diameter, is cut horizontally and piled high with imported salami, mortadella, ham, provolone cheese and olive salad. There's no tomatoes, onions or lettuce. No mayonnaise or mustard. What keeps this sandwich tasty and moist is the olive salad which is usually oozing out from all sides. The olive salad, made fresh at Central Grocery, is a melange of olives, garlic, celery, carrots and cauliflower covered in olive oil and spices and allowed to combine for hours. The sandwich can be purchased whole, halved or quartered depending on your appetite. Some places heat their muffuletta but not at Central Grocery. I tried it both ways and decided I like the cold version best Central Grocery 923 Decatur St. New Orleans, LA 504-523-1620

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