Cook this: Fried mortadella with American cheese sauce and focaccia from Matty Matheson's Home Style Cookery

'Layering gently fried mortadella with American cheese is a real Italian nightmare and a Canadian chef's miracle,' says Matty Matheson

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Our cookbook of the week is Matty Matheson: Home Style Cookery by Matty Matheson. Tomorrow, we’ll feature an interview with the author.

To try another recipe from the book, check out: Waldorf sweet potato salad and focaccia.

A towering stack of alternating slices of mortadella and cheese, this is one slippery sandwich. Use your own homemade focaccia to up the satisfaction factor, and be prepared to get a little messy.

“Fried mortadella sandwiches are REALLY good,” says Matty Matheson. “It’s so good and comforting. And you could easily do bologna or salami, or whatever kind of meat. It’s one of those things that are versatile.”

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If you’d prefer a more orderly sandwich, make it crêpe-style, he suggests: Put a single layer of mortadella in your pan, top with a single layer of cheese, and then fold it like an envelope for a mortadella cheese crêpe sandwich.

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“It just steams and melts,” says Matheson. “It’s an ooey gooey sandwich.”

Matty Matheson: Home Style Cookery
In his second book, Home Style Cookery, Matty Matheson’s creative treatment of vegetables steals the spotlight. Photo by Abrams

FRIED MORTADELLA WITH AMERICAN CHEESE SAUCE AND SAVORY FOCACCIA

Prep time: 20 minutes

1 recipe Focaccia (see recipe)
1/4 cup (60 mL) olive oil
8 thin slices (150 g) mortadella
6 slices American Kraft Singles (preferably)
1/4 cup (60 mL) mayonnaise (preferably Hellmann’s)
1/4 cup (60 mL) yellow mustard
1/2 cup (40 g) thinly shaved iceberg lettuce
1/3 cup (40 g) very thinly shaved white onion
1 large dill pickle, cut in half

Step 1

Cut the focaccia into quarters and reserve three-fourths for more sandwiches later. Cut your piece of focaccia down the middle on the bias, split it open and drizzle olive oil all over the inside of both sides of bread.

Step 2

Heat a large skillet and add olive oil to the pan. Once the oil is hot, add one-half of the focaccia and toast until golden and nice and crunchy. Just toast the one side, then remove to a plate, crispy side facing up. Repeat with the other half.

Step 3

Take 1 slice of mortadella, then add 1 slice of cheese. Then add another mortadella slice and a slice of cheese on top of that. Repeat until you have a stack of 4 slices of mortadella and 3 slices of cheese in between. Heat the meat pancake over medium heat until the cheese starts to melt. Leave warm and melty in the pan.

Step 4

Spread mayo over both sides of the toasted focaccia, followed by the mustard. Place the lettuce on the bun bottom and top that with the onion. Place the cheesy mortadella on top and finish with the bun top, then slice down the middle, exposing the layered cheesy goodness. Spear a dill pickle with a toothpick, then spear the top of a sandwich half. Repeat with the other sandwich.

Serves: 2

Excerpted from Matty Matheson: Home Style Cookery by Matty Matheson. Text copyright ? 2020 Cassoulet Palace, Inc. Photographs copyright ? 2020 Quentin Bacon. Published in 2020 by Abrams, an imprint of ABRAMS.

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