Posted by Anita On October - 19 - 20112,953 views

Roasted Eggplant and Spinach Muffuletta Sandwich

It may be a cliche to write this book will change your life but…what the hell, this book will change your life! Veganomicon: The Ultimate Vegan Cookbook (the title may sound familiar to fans of a certain horror movie trilogy featuring demonic ex-girlfriends and chainsaws that replace hands) is a big, fat hardcover cook book with delicious plant based recipes. This book will guide through everything from salads to desserts (vegan ice cream!) and there’s even a section explaining basics such as how to roast a variety of vegetables and what cooking tools are the best to use. And did I mention that all this is brought to you by Isa Chandra Moskowitz and Terry Hope Romero? It is! These are the same brilliant minds that brought you “Vegan Cupcakes Take Over The World” and “Vegan Cookies Invade Your Cooki Jar”. If you don’t already own these books run, don’t walk to your local bookstore! I promise you will not be disappointed with the results. I also need to add that Veganomicon has the BEST recipe for Caeser salad dressing hands down. You will not find a better vegan recipe for this dressing, I swear it! Here is another great recipe for a sandwich to end all sandwiches or as these gals like to call them “sammiches”.

Roasted Eggplant and Spinach Muffuletta Sandwich

Veganomicon Book

Mixed Olive Salad Relish
1 cup kalamata olives
1 cup pitted green olives
1/2 cup coarsely chopped Italian parsley
4 cloves pickled garlic
1/2 cup sun dried tomatoes, oil packed or dried
4 teaspoons red wine or white balsamic vinegar
1 teaspoon dried, crumbled rosemary
1 teaspoon dried, crumbled thyme
1 teaspoon celery seed
1 teaspoon dried, crumbled oregano
1 teaspoon dried, crumbled basil
1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil

1 smallish eggplant (less than 1 pound)
3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
1 tablespoon red wine vinegar
3 cups fresh spinach leaves, washed and dry
2 roasted red or yellow peppers from a jar or homemade
1 (9-10 inch) round peasant style loaf (about 1-1 1/2 pounds)

Preheat the oven to 375 F degrees. Lightly grease a rimmed baking sheet. Cut the eggplant widthwise into 1/4 inch slices and rub with kosher salt. Allow to drain in a colander for 30 mins.

Prepare the relish while the eggplant is draining:
Place the olives, garlic and sun dried tomatoes in a large bowl. Toss with the vinegar and dried herbs. With a food processor, chop the mixture in 2 or 3 batches, adding some of the olive oil with each batch. Process only enough to chop up the olives and tomatoes: stop often and use a rubber spatula to move the stuff around. Scrape the relish, along with the remaining olive oil, into an airtight container.
Place the spinach leaves in a large bowl (you can use the one that once held the olives). Sprinkle with 1 tablespoon red wine vinegar.

Roast the eggplant slices:

Rinse the eggplant slices with cold water, rub with olive oil, and lay in a baking sheet (some overlapping is ok). Roast in the preheated oven for 20 to 22 minutes, flipping once, until the eggplant is browned and tender. Place the hot eggplant slices on top of the spinach and toss to combine (it will slightly wilt the spinach).

Assemble the sandwich:

Insert a thin,sharp knife into the side of the round loaf at a slightly downward angle. Cut the loaf in half, working the knife on the angle to creat a shallow bread “bowl”. Remove some of the bread from the bread from the bottom and top interior of the loaf to deepen the bowl.

Spread the olive relish bery thickly on each side of the loaf, making sure to get lots of the oil and juices onto the bread. Drizzle on a little extra olive oil if it looks dry. Layer the eggplant, spinach, roasted red peppers, more eggplant and top with last of spinach. Replace top of the loaf and press downvery firmly with your entire body weight on the entire sandwich; don’t be afraid to smush it down. Wrap tightly in foil, then wrap again in plastic wrap or bag. Refrigerate, putting a few heavy items on top. For maximum flavour allow to sit at least 3 hours-or even better-overnight. To serve , hold the sandwich firmly and cut in half with a sharp serrated knife, then slice again into four wedges.

Bon Appetit! : )

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