Wednesday, April 1, 2015

Muffuletta Olive Salad (Spread)

This fresh and tasty salad, made with olives and other vegetables is the traditional spread on a muffuletta sandwich, made famous by Central Grocery in New Orleans, Louisiana. Why it’s called salad when it’s clearly a spread, I do not know. Let’s just go with it. 

First off, let’s agree that there are as many recipes for this Italian olive salad as there are Italian mamas and lovers of the classic New Orleans muffuletta sandwich. And this is mine. If you want to throw in a few more pickled onions or capers, feel free, but just make sure you’ve got a healthy mix of olives in there. It’s all about the olives when it’s called olive salad. This stuff is great spread on sandwiches or crackers or even used as a rough dip.


13.4 oz or 380g jar marinated vegetables (The jar I used had a mixture of artichoke hearts, pimentos and mushrooms, grilled, with oil. That there >)
12.5 oz or 354g jar of pimento-stuffed green olives, drained weight 7oz or 200g
3.3 oz or 95g Kalamata olives, weight before pitting
4 oz or 115g spicy pickled onions
8 or 9 cornichons (little bitty pickles) or 35g
1 heaping tablespoon capers
2 fresh green pepperoncini (Together they weighed 2.3 oz or 65g.)
3 large cloves garlic
Extra virgin olive oil, if necessary, to loosen into spreading consistency

Pit your Kalamata olives.

Cut the stem ends off of the fresh peppers and then cut them into large pieces. You can take out the fluffy white bits as well if you want but pepperoncini aren't spicy so don't worry about the seeds.

Tip the Kalamatas and cut peppers into the food processor with the rest of the ingredients, including the marinade from the vegetables. Everything else should have been drained of its brine.

Pulse, scraping down the sides until the spread is fairly smooth. If you need to add a drizzle of olive oil to make it spread nicely, now is the time. I added just a couple of tablespoons full. Pulse again.

This makes about 2 1/2 - 3 cups of olive salad spread. Store it in a clean jar, in the refrigerator, covering it with a little olive oil to keep the top from drying out. Remember to drizzle a little oil on top before you put it back in the refrigerator whenever you take a scoop out. It will keep well for weeks, if it lasts that long.


One day I'll post my traditional muffuletta sandwich using this bread, because I did make one.

Exhibit A:

But meanwhile, how about a muffuletta grilled cheese?

Best sandwich I've had in a very long time, and that includes the muffuletta above. 

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