Mardi Gras is coming soon, and although I do not need an excuse for a party, this is as good as any. Mardi Gras or “Fat Tuesday”, is the prelude to Lent, the 40 days between Ash Wednesday and Easter. Traditionally, in the days leading up to Lent, people would have one big party and eat tons of food as they prepared for fasting during those 40 days.
While I have been to New Orleans, I have never been during Mardi Gras festivities. I hear it is pretty crazy, so my friends and I are having our own little party here in California.
In New Orleans, there are lots of parties and parades. The traditional colors of Mardi Gras are Purple, Yellow and Green representing justice, power and faith, respectively. Masks and beads are fun party accessories and the festivities would not be complete without Zydeco Music.
Here is a recipe for Muffaletta sandwiches I made for the party (adapted from a Taste of Home recipe)
1/4 cup pimiento-stuffed olives, drained and chopped
1 can (4-1/4 ounces) ripe olives, chopped
2 teaspoons balsamic vinegar
2 teaspoons red wine vinegar
2 teaspoons olive oil
2 cloves minced garlic
1/2 teaspoon basil
1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
1/4 lb thinly sliced hard salami
1/4 lb sliced provolone cheese
1/4 lb thinly sliced cotto salami
1/4 lb sliced part-skim mozzarella cheese
1 loaf french bread
In a bowl mix together both types of olives, both vinegars, olive oil, garlic, basil and oregano.
Remove the inside of the bottom half of the french bread and spread olive mixture over bread.
Then layer slices of salami, mozzarella cheese, salami and provolone cheese on the sandwich.
Put top of bread on sandwich and cut into serving size sandwiches. Makes about 1 dozen sandwiches.
For a nice accompaniment, try this Jambalaya recipe from Lemons For Lulu:
If you ever do get to New Orleans, and do not get there for Mardi Gras, be sure to check out Mardi Gras World. My friend Mary from Let’s Play OC! was born in New Orleans and wrote a great post about it here.