Tastes like Mardi Gras


Mardi Gras is on my travel bucket list, but while I'm waiting for the right time to make the trip down to The Big Easy for the festivities I do my best to celebrate the fun at home. Mostly that just means eating. It's how I like to celebrate most holidays. Last year I had some fun with the food and I've seriously been saving these recipes for a whole year. Stop by the grocery store on your way home tomorrow and pick up the ingredients for some New Orleans' inspired Muffuletta Grilled Cheese & King (Pan)Cakes. (March 4 is also International Pancake Day after all!)

 muffaletta grilled cheese

Muffuletta Grilled Cheese (inspired by this recipe)

Sliced Italian White Bread
2 cloves garlic peeled and diced
1/4 cup red wine vinegar
1 teaspoon dried oregano
1/3 cup olive oil
10-12 medium pitted green olives, chopped
12-14 kalamata olives, chopped
1/4 cup roasted red bell peppers, chopped
3 tablespoons pimentos, chopped
1/2 large shallot, diced
salt and freshly ground black pepper
8 slices thinly sliced ham
8 slices Genoa salami
8 thin slices provolone cheese
8 thin slices swiss cheese

In a large bowl, whisk together the first three ingredients. Then slowly drizzle in the olive oil while continuing to whisk until blended. Stir in the olives, pepper, pimentos and shallot and season with salt and pepper.

Melt 2 tablespoons of butter in a large pan over medium heat. Once the butter is melted and bubbling just a little, place one slice of bread on the pan. Layer  2 slices cheese, 2 slices meat, olive vinaigrette, 2 slices meat, 2 slices cheese and top all with another slice of bread. Once the bottom of the sandwich is golden, flip and allow to golden on the other side. Slide the grilled cheese out of the pan on to a plate and continue with the remaining ingredients to make four sandwiches.

King (Pan)Cakes

King (Pan)Cakes

I recommend this Martha Stewart pancake recipe.

For the icing, mix together 2 cups powdered sugar, 1 teaspoon vanilla, 1 tablespoon unsalted butter, melted, 4 tablespoons low fat or whole milk, and a pinch of salt until smooth.

Drizzle the icing generously over your pancake stack and sprinkle gold, purple and green sprinkles on top in thirds. Serve & Enjoy!

King (Pan)Cakes Stack