Hot Italian Porchetta Open-Faced Sandwiches etc…

Hot Italian open- faced sandwiches 4092eae502389c353289a81d859b105f1 2

Hot Italian Pork & Gravy Open – Faced Sandwiches

What kind of store doesn’t have broccolini?  Mine, they are never consistent in what they choose to carry from moment to moment!  So I guess it is hot Italian pork sandwiches using that beautiful thinly sliced Porchetta saving plenty for another night when I know I can get broccolini…Tuesday, maybe?

I never measure what I put on my Porchetta so feel free to look around for one that appeals to you and just slap it on a slow grill or smoker for about 6 hours.  I use the Primo Grill that maintains a 325°, but I still have to watch the temperature and make adjustment from time to time.  (325°) Look around for a Porchetta recipe (Mario Batali’s is a good one as is Gabrielle Corcos…links below:
Aromas of simmering gravy reminded me of Chicago “Italian beef” only pork, does that make sense?  Many of the same spices and herbs make it that way I suppose…

For the sandwiches, heat the gravy and have two slices of your favorite bread ready on a warmed plate.  When the gravy is hot enough add as much of the thinly sliced pork as you need for the number of sandwiches that you are making.  Pluck out and pile hot slices of Porchetta on top of the bread (gotta say a good crusty-rustic Italian is perfect for the sandwich bread).  Serve piping hot and give a good grind of fresh black pepper, or a dash of hot sauce to each sandwich.

Cauliflower-Turnip Grantinee 2

Now for the forgotten cauliflower-parsnip gratinee, what a winner and I can’t answer why people hate or don’t eat cauliflower they don’t know what they are missing…try this recipe that can be made ahead of time as I found out and consider individual casseroles or ramekins, especially for a holiday dinner.  Honestly, the béchamel is actually enough for six individual servings, just consider adding the rest of a small head of the cauliflower and 3 more medium turnips for 6 servings.  Yes and I did use ½ + ½ and 2% milk.  Have ready the following ingredients:

1/2 head small cauliflower florets
3 turnips, peeled, large dice
8 tablespoon grated Parmigiano-Reggiano
3 cups 2% milk
1 cup 1/2 + 1/2 (for béchamel use equal parts flour and butter)
4-6 tablespoon unsalted butter
4-6 tablespoons AP flour
salt & white pepper
3 cloves garlic

Cauliflower-Parsnip Gratinee

* Optional if you like mushrooms  1.  1 package (4 ounces oyster mushrooms or mixed mushrooms).  Sauté in a little olive oil, remove to a bowl and add a little minced parsley and minced chives, 1 tablespoon unsalted butter and a minced clove of garlic, a tablespoon of parmesan cheese and set aside until time to top the gratinee. 

2.  Add the parsnips and cauliflower to a medium saucepan season with a little salt and pepper, toss in 1 clove garlic and add the milk and cream to cover.  Cook for 5-10 minutes on low heat, test the turnips, they should be fork tender.  Remove vegetables with a slotted spoon (reserve milk) and place into a medium bowl and allow to rest 5-6 minutes.   Gently break the vegetables (not mash) you want a chunky gratinee.

2.  Make a béchamel sauce and set aside (can be reheated if made ahead).  Melt butter in a saucepan, and whisk in all the flour and cook for at least a minute.  Add the milk liquid from the cauliflower to the pan, whisking constantly until thickened 7-10 minutes on a low simmer, remove from heat and grate a little nutmeg into the béchamel and season with salt and white pepper.

Rub 3-4 individual casseroles or ramekins with garlic and then lightly butter them (onion soup bowls work well, but not the big ones).  Gently blend some of the béchamel into the vegetables as well as the cheese add to ramekins.  *optional 1/4 teaspoon white balsamic atop each serving.  Bake in a preheated 350° oven for 15 minutes or until lightly browned.  Remove from oven and grate a little cheese of your choice over ( I used a mellow cinco Lanzas, but any mellow cheese is good).  There are a few mellow wine cheeses available that will work well.  Top with mushroom topping if using…someone around here doesn’t like mushrooms or at least visible ones!