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Eggplant, Mozzarello and Arugula Muffuletta with Sundried Tomato Dressing

July 31, 2011

Lazy summer weekends require just a little bit of advanced planning to fall into place perfectly.  I may want to relax and enjoy my weekends, but I also want to have great tasting, good meals to enjoy at my leisure.  I’ve made pressed sandwiches in many variations; I prefer mostly to have an all veggie stuffing.  It may not be all that kid friendly but I don’t have to worry about that these days.

When my children were younger, I would make a Muffuletta with deli turkey and brie.  We’d pack up this sandwich for weekend trips to Sanibel or beach picnics.  It carries really well; prepared ahead of time and sliced when ready to eat.  Can’t get much easier or better than that!

I really miss those road trips. My daughter would carry on and on hating being in the car, her stomach always hurting.  My son and her would fight over what dvd movie to play, he liked the action type or scary ones and she liked the girly teen movies.  Once settled on the movie to watch, we dealt with her sitting too close to him, volume adjusting too loud, too quiet, fidgeting, complaints and finally falling asleep.  Some of the most wonderful memories I will always cherish.

Eggplant, Mozzarello and Arugula Muffuletta with Sun Dried Tomato and Olive Dressing

1/3 cup sun dried tomatoes

Boiling water

¼ cup pitted kalamata olives

¼ cup olive oil – or less

2 cloves garlic, chopped

2 tablespoons parsley leaves

¼ teaspoon ground black pepper

1 loaf Rosemary bread or other freshly bakede rustic style bread

1 eggplant, peeled and cut into ¼ inch horizontal slices

2 peppers, either red or combination of red, yellow or orange

½ pound mozzarella cheese

2 cups arugula

For the dressing:

Place sun dried tomatoes in enough boiling water to cover. Let stand for 15 minutes to soften.  Drain and add to food processor along with the olives, garlic anchovy paste, parsley and pepper.  Slowly add in olive oil to form a paste; not excessively oily.  Refrigerate until ready to use, can be made a day ahead.

For the grilled eggplant:

Lightly oil each slices and grill until tender.  Season with kosher salt and black pepper.  Set aside to cool.

For the roasted peppers:

Place peppers on grill and grill until charred all over.  Or use a foil lined broiler pan and broil until charred all over.  Immediately place peppers into a paper bag and allow to cool.  When cool enough to handle, peel off skin, discard seeds and slice into large sections.  Do not rinse the peppers, just use your hands to rub off the skin and seeds. Set aside.

For the muffuletta:

Cut bread horizontally with a serrated knife.  Remove some of the bread from the inside on both halves, leaving about ½ inch crust.  Save bread in the freezer for bread crumbs or stuffing.  Spread both cut sides with some of the dressing.  Layer in the eggplant slices, top with roasted pepper slices.  Spread another light layer of the dressing and top with mozzarella slices.  Add another layer of eggplant slices and top with arugula.  Firmly press sandwich closed with top crust and tightly wrap with plastic wrap or foil.  Refrigerate until ready to cut and serve.  Also panini pressing this sandwich is awesome!!

25 Comments leave one →
  1. July 31, 2011 5:58 pm

    Beautiful looking sandwich!! I love Muffulettas!!! Your recipe sounds very tasty! I will definitely try it!! Thanks for sharing!!

  2. July 31, 2011 6:06 pm

    You hit this one out of the park, Linda! And while you may cherish memories of those car trips, rest assured your children will, too, if they don’t already. And one day they’ll speak fondly of them to their own children, too.

  3. July 31, 2011 6:17 pm

    Wonderful sandwich! I am with you on picking an all-veggie as my favorite – although I must say that a few slices of prosciutto would not be kicked out of mine!
    ;-)

  4. July 31, 2011 6:34 pm

    I love your eggplant posts! I always get so excited when I see it in the title. :) Wonderful. And those car trips sound so familiar!!!!! As much as the kids can make my head spin (or make me want to bang it on a wall at times) on our road trips, I’m cherishing every moment!!!!!

  5. July 31, 2011 7:35 pm

    What a fantastic sandwich!

  6. July 31, 2011 8:12 pm

    Superb! I agree with Kristy. I love your eggplant posts. All of your posts really!

  7. July 31, 2011 8:36 pm

    What a lovely summer recipe. You are so right – in order to be relaxed, you definitely need to do some advance planning. This looks perfect.

  8. July 31, 2011 11:39 pm

    This looks amazing! Yum!

  9. August 1, 2011 12:53 am

    A veggie muffuletta, what a great idea!

  10. August 1, 2011 1:21 am

    This sandwich looks awesome. I was thinking of making a pressed sandwich this weekend, and your combo of ingredients looks really tasty. Great post!

  11. August 1, 2011 3:13 am

    Now this is a seriously decadent sandwich exploding with wonderful flavours.
    :-) Mandy

  12. August 1, 2011 3:53 am

    We´re going to do a long trip soon across Spain, so will have to make something like this for hunger emergencies en route! Looks delicious…

  13. August 1, 2011 8:21 am

    Looks like we both posted a veggie sandwich today but I am liking yours WAY more! It sounds and looks so much better! Wow! I am hungry now

  14. August 1, 2011 12:27 pm

    What a gorgeous sandwich, this look amazing Linda! Sun-dried tomatoes are the best, especially when paired with eggplant.

  15. August 1, 2011 12:38 pm

    You have the best eggplant and zucchini posts. I am going to make this we have a big bowl full of eggplant from the garden. I miss road trips but I need to wait until my 21 month old is a bit bigger, can’t stand the tantrums right now!

  16. August 1, 2011 3:03 pm

    This looks excellent and I am thinking it would be PERFECT for dinner tonight on this hot and muggy day.

  17. August 2, 2011 6:26 am

    You know its a good sandwich when you have to slice it like a piece of cake. LOL! I envy your presentation and photos. Gorgeous!

  18. August 2, 2011 1:00 pm

    Love the muffuletta, especially with your dressing to make it extra special.

  19. August 2, 2011 3:05 pm

    This sandwich looks fabulous…I could have it for lunch now…love the pictures Linda!
    Hope you are having a fantastic week!

  20. August 2, 2011 7:20 pm

    Amazing sandwich, i love muffulettas..and my kids act the same exact way, so funny!!

  21. August 3, 2011 3:11 am

    Sounds child friendly to me…but my kids love olives and sun-dried tomatoes…

  22. August 3, 2011 6:48 am

    This sounds amazing and a perfect use for my homemade sun dried tomatoes, yay!

  23. August 3, 2011 3:00 pm

    I didn’t even need to read the ingredients…the picture says it all. Great job!

  24. August 7, 2011 5:53 pm

    Where were you when I was growing up? Is it too late to adopt you into my family?! :)

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