Saturday, March 5, 2011

Tea Sandwich Saturday #10 - The Mini Muffuletta

Now if you're a New Orleans native like my husband, please don't get your Mardi Gras beads in a bundle. Yes, I know the only real muffuletta to a New Orleanian is the one from Central Grocery on Decatur Street in New Orleans (see a photo of it here), but since Mardi Gras is coming up this Tuesday I thought I'd give a nod to the famous muffuletta by making some mini muffulettas as this week's tea sandwiches. If I were planning a tea on or around Mardi Gras season, I would simply have to serve this sandwich or some variation thereof!

Some of the main ingredients for layering are ham (I used Black Forest Ham), salami and Provolone cheese. I got the deli clerk to slice mine 1/8 inch thick. (I love buying one slice at a time, and they truly don't seem to mind slicing them.)

But the most important ingredient of all is the Olive Salad that pulls all these great flavors together. The Publix I usually shop at didn't have any, so I had to go to Kroger to find a jar of Olive Salad. Their deli had some bread already neatly sliced into 2 to 2-1/2-inch rounds, so I opted for that. My husband likes the taste but says this is "definitely not a girl sandwich," and he's right in the sense that it's not your usual delicate tea sandwich. I actually thought of making this with thin-sliced meats and cheeses and doing something with the olive salad mixed in with cream cheese, but that just seemed wrong, somehow, since the muffuletta was never designed to be a dainty sandwich. At a seated (as opposed to buffet-style) tea near Mardi Gras, I think this could work!

You can find lots of recipes online for the muffuletta as well as the Olive Salad, so this would be something fun to experiment with. Here's Emeril's version, just to give you an idea of one variation. I got to eat a muffuletta, the real thing, at the Central Grocery counter on vacation a few years ago, so I definitely have good memories to associate with this sandwich.

So will you be enjoying any special foods for Mardi Gras this year? As they say in New Orleans, "Laissez les bons temps rouler!" (Let the good times roll!)


  1. Another interesting sandwich. It would add a new dimension to the usual tea tray. I would try this.

  2. I agree with your husband, I can't see this as a dainty tea sandwich. *LOL* Love the recipe, though, and it makes me want to go to New Orleans again.

  3. Now I don't know if we have olive salad here. Not celebrating either. I think I am just too far from New Orleans to celebrating, don't you think? Sandwich looks yummy, one the guys definitely would like.

  4. Those look delicious, Angela!
    What a nice salute to Mardi Gras.
    I love Mardi Gras and beighnets ('ben-yays?')

    Did you know that Krystal's has their own version of Ben-yays?
    They are small, dough-balls that are fried & sprinkled with powdered sugar - very high in calories, but they sure are good!
    And they serve them hot & fresh, hard to resist!

  5. Thought I've never had an original muffuletta, I did enjoy the "knock off" versions I've had. Thanks for the idea to mini-size this wonderful sandwich.

  6. Your Muffuletta sandwiches look yummy and I wouldn't mind a nice slice of King Cake to have with a Mardi Gras tea either.

    The only time I've made a muffuletta it was one of those recipes where you use a whole round loaf of bread. Then it's loaded up and weighted and pressed down and kept in the fridge for a while. The olive salad is what really makes it, isn't it?


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