Muffaletta Flatbread Pizza

True story: I often dream about muffaletta sandwiches. They have the perfect combination of flavors. Smoky provolone. Cured meats. Fantastic olive salad. This muffaletta flatbread pizza takes all those great flavors (and more) and puts it on a bite-sized crunchy slice. Perfect for a party, perfect for any time!
Muffaletta Flatbread PizzaI make my own olive salad when I have time. It’s completely amazing, and definitely one of my favorite things to make. No matter if you use homemade or store-bought, make sure you drain the salad a bit before using it. You want a bit of the great olive oil flavor, but you don’t want a soggy pizza.

Muffaletta Flatbread Pizza
Author: 
Recipe type: Main or Appetizer
Cuisine: American
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
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Serves: 2 pizzas
 
Ingredients
Toppings (divide equally between the two flatbreads)
  • Olive salad, drained just slightly
  • 1/2 cup shredded cheese (Mozzarella, provolone, Italian blend, whatever you prefer)
  • 3 slices Provolone cheese, cut into strips
  • 3 slices salami, cut into strips or chopped
  • 3 slices Mortadella, cut into strips or chopped
  • 3 slices Capicolla, Prosciutto, or smoked ham, cut into strips or chopped
  • 1/4 cup baby artichoke hearts, drained, chopped
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 375 F.
  2. Place flatbreads on baking sheets and bake for 2 minutes. Flip and bake for another 2 minutes to get crusts slightly crunchy. Remove and let cool slightly.
  3. Spread olive salad on to the flatbreads. Get a little of the yummy juice on them but not too much or they will be soggy.
  4. Add remaining ingredients.
  5. Bake for 10-15 minutes or until cheese has melted and crust is crunchy.
  6. Place under broiler for 30 seconds or so if you want a little char on the toppings.
  7. Slice and serve.

Big Mac Meatball Subs

I don’t know where some of my ideas come from. It’s probably best that I don’t know. But I do know that this right here, my Big Mac Meatball Subs, was one of my best creations. I was craving that great Big Mac taste but I didn’t have burger patties on hand. But I did have meatballs. Yeah, it’s just like a Big Mac burger, but oh so much better. And easier to make.

Big Mac meatball subs are a tad bit messy to eat and that’s a good thing. I’ve said it a millions times before. The messier the sandwich, the better it is. Put up the fine linens and grab some paper towels and dig in!

Also try my grilled Big Macs (a longtime favorite of mine) and Big Mac sliders (same great flavors, packed into smaller bites). Make an extra big batch of the special sauce. I use it on regular old cold-cut sandwiches and hot dogs!

Big Mac Meatball Subs
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Serves: 2 servings
 
Ingredients
For the special sauce (makes more than you'll need)
  • 1/2 cup mayonnaise
  • 4 tablespoons French salad dressing
  • 4 teaspoons sweet pickle relish
  • 3 teaspoons white onion, minced
  • 1 teaspoon white vinegar
  • Pinch of salt
For the subs
  • 10 pre-cooked, frozen meatballs
  • 2 sub rolls
  • 2 slices American cheese
  • Special sauce, from above
  • 1/4 cup white onion, diced
  • Dill pickles
  • 1/2 cup shredded lettuce
Instructions
For the special sauce
  1. Combine all ingredients and whisk until smooth. Refrigerate until ready to use.
For the subs
  1. Heat the meatballs per package instructions. The last 5 minutes of heating add the buns to the oven to warm them.
  2. Assemble subs by slathering bun bottoms with special sauce. Add the cheese, onion and lettuce.
  3. Top with meatballs and dill pickles.

Biscuits + Groovy The Donna Summer

I watch the show Eat Street on the Cooking Channel because I love food trucks. Whenever there’s one near me I stop and get something, anything. One of the episodes of Eat Street had the host, James Cunningham, stop at the Biscuits + Groovy trailer in Austin, TX. Because Anita and I love biscuits and gravy I knew instantly that I was going to make some of the dishes they serve up. I mean, dang, look at the menu! Everything sounds fantastic, including The Donna Summer. Biscuits, white pepper gravy, breakfast sausage and scrambled eggs topped with cheese and garnished with green onions. This ain’t no light breakfast, it’s the breakfast of champions!
I’m definitely not a food industry expert, but I do recognize a good concept when I see it. All of the biscuit dishes from Biscuits + Groovy start with great buttermilk biscuits. You can then build from there, like with the Donna Summer, which is definitely loaded with all things good and breakfasty.

If I was anywhere near Austin, Texas right now I’d be in line at the Biscuits + Groovy trailer and my stomach would be growling!

Biscuits + Groovy The Donna Summer
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Serves: 1 serving
 
Ingredients
  • 3 Pillsbury Flaky biscuits (or use my homemade black pepper biscuits)
  • White pepper gravy (see below)
  • 3 large eggs (see below)
  • Shredded Colby jack cheese
  • Fresh chives or green onions
For the white pepper gravy
  • 3 tablespoons butter
  • 3 tablespoons flour
  • 1 cup milk (plus more depending on how thick or thin you like your gravy)
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
For the scrambled eggs
  • 2 tablespoons Bisquik
  • 1 tablespoon butter
Instructions
For the white gravy
  1. Melt the butter in a small saucepan.
  2. Whisk in the flour.
  3. Whisk in the milk until smooth. Gravy will continue to thicken. If too thick add a bit more milks.
  4. Season with salt and pepper to taste.
For the scrambled eggs
  1. Thoroughly beat eggs with mix until there are no clumps or lumps.
  2. Melt butter in a small skillet over medium heat.
  3. Add eggs and season with salt and pepper. Let sit for 1 minute.
  4. Once eggs start to cook start pushing toward middle with a spatula. Continue until eggs are completely cooked
For the biscuits
  1. Preheat oven to 350 F. Add biscuits and cook per package instructions.
Making the biscuits
  1. Split biscuits and place on a plate.
  2. Add eggs, gravy and cheese.
  3. Top with chives or green onions. Serve.

White Garlic Chicken Pizza

This white garlic chicken pizza reminded me that I really need to eat more white sauce pizza. I usually opt for red, making my own sauce, but the creamy, garlicky, cheesy sauce on this pizza was fantastic. Black olives, shallot, moist and tender chicken and Mozzarella topped it all off delicious bite-after-bite.
White Garlic Chicken PizzaI used chicken that I had roasted on my Char-Broil Big Easy when making this white garlic chicken pizza, but any cooked chicken will do. Grab a rotisserie chicken next time you’re at the store and shred or chop it. Perfect.

Also try my BBQ chicken pizza.

White Garlic Chicken Pizza
Author: 
Recipe type: Main
Cuisine: American
Prep time: 
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Serves: 2 pizzas
 
Ingredients
For the white garlic pizza sauce
  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 4 cloves garlic, minced
  • 3 tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 1/4 teaspoon Kosher salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon dried oregano, dried
  • 1 cup milk
  • 1/2 cup Parmesan cheese
For the pizza
  • 2 10" pre-made pizza crusts
  • 10 ounces cooked chicken, shredded, chopped or cubed
  • 2 medium shallots, sliced thin
  • Black olives, sliced
  • Mozzarella cheese
  • Chopped fresh parsley, for garnish, if desired
Instructions
For the white garlic pizza sauce
  1. Melt butter in a small saucepan over medium-high heat.
  2. Stir in the garlic and cook for 30 seconds.
  3. Whisk in the flour, pepper, salt and oregano. Cook for 30 seconds.
  4. Slowly add the milk while whisking.
  5. Remove from heat and add the cheese. Stir to melt.
  6. Use sauce immediately.
For the pizza
  1. Preheat oven per package instructions.
  2. Spread sauce out on both crusts.
  3. Add chicken, shallots and olives, followed by the cheese.
  4. Bake until the crusts are crisp, golden brown, and the cheese is melted.
  5. Garnish with parsley, slice and serve.

Kentucky Farmhouse Scramble

Scrambled eggs are always one of my go-to off-menu items when something unexpected comes up. For example, I might have been planning for a big grill-out, but big storms make me change my plans. That’s when I go to eggs. This Kentucky farmhouse scramble was absolutely delicious. It’s a great example of why breakfast for dinner is a great idea and not just when your plans have to change, but any time.
What really made this Kentucky farmhouse scramble special for both of us were the roasted red bell peppers and the crunchy French fried onions. This is the kind of scramble that makes omelets jealous.

Also try my Hobo Hash.

Kentucky Farmhouse Scramble
Author: 
Recipe type: Main
Cuisine: American
Prep time: 
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Serves: 4 servings
 
Ingredients
  • 1 tablespoon unsalted butter
  • 1 tablespoon vegetable oil
  • 8 ounces diced boneless ham
  • 1/2 cup roasted red peppers, diced
  • 12 large eggs, beaten
  • 1/4 cup shredded mozzarella cheese
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • French Fried onions, for garnish
  • Chives, chopped, for garnish
Instructions
  1. Heat large skillet over medium heat.
  2. Add the butter and oil and stir until metled.
  3. Add the ham and saute until the edges get golden brown.
  4. Turn heat to low and add the peppers and eggs.
  5. Stir until the eggs are just cooked.
  6. Fold in the cheese and continue stirring slowly until melted.
  7. Season with salt and pepper.
  8. Serve eggs topped with French fried onions and chives.

Copycat Quizno’s Italian Sub

I used to work just down the street from a Quizno’s. I went there often for lunch. Ok, very often. I loved their toasted bread and great meats and toppings. Now I work from home and I prefer to make my own lunch, so I make a copycat of the classic Quizno’s Italian sub, my favorite item on their menu. The sweet balsamic dressing and pesto are what really make this sandwich memorable. Even if you don’t follow the recipe for the toppings exactly, make the dressing and add the pesto.
I find pepperoncini peppers to be a must-have on a sub. And on a pizza for that matter. I prefer them over pickles. They’re crunchier and tangier and really wake up whatever you put them on.

Also check out my copycat of the Battalion Chief Sub from Firehouse Subs and Subway’s Italian BMT.

Copycat Quizno's Italian Sub
Recipe type: Main
Cuisine: American
Prep time: 
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Serves: 6 servings
 
Ingredients
For the sandwiches
  • 6 sub rolls (or 2 loaves French bread, each cut into 3 equal sizes)
  • Sweet balsamic dressing (see below)
  • Basil pesto (I used store-bought)
  • 1/3 pound sliced salami
  • 1/3 pound sliced pepperoni
  • 1/3 pound sliced ham
  • 12 slices mozzarella cheese
  • Dried oregano
  • 12 thin slices tomato
  • 12 thin slices onion
  • Green leaf lettuce
  • 1 8 ounce can sliced black olives, drained
  • Pepperoncini peppers
For the sweet balsamic dressing
  • 1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
  • 2 teaspoons brown sugar
  • 1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper
Instructions
For the sandwiches
  1. Preheat your oven to 300 F.
  2. Split rolls horizontally and place onto baking sheet(s).
  3. Brush one cut side of the bread with the dressing.
  4. Spread about 1 tablespoon of the pesto onto the other side of the cut bread.
  5. Add meats and cheese and sprinkle lightly with the oregano.
  6. Bake for 10 minutes.
  7. Add remaining ingredients and serve.
For the sweet balsamic dressing
  1. Whisk all ingredients until well combined.

Pork Medallions in Mushroom Marsala Sauce

I’m going to need a moment before I can write about these pork medallions in mushroom Marsala sauce. Whenever I start to type I flash back to the aroma, the flavor, the absolutely divine mushroom sauce, and the tender pork… This dish absolutely hit the spot on a cool early fall evening. The gravy is the absolute bomb. It would be great on any dish where you need a mushroom gravy.


I prefer to make this dish in a large cast iron skillet, finishing it off in the oven. The cast iron gives me that great sear, while cooking nice and evenly so that the pork comes out perfect. You can finish the pork on the stovetop if you wish, but I really think you’ll get a much better, more even, cook in the oven. And it really doesn’t take long at all. Just try resisting spooning out some of the gravy while it’s cooking. You’ll want to get yourself a taste. And then some.

Also try my slow-cooked mushroom pork tenderloin.

Pork Medallions in Mushroom Marsala Sauce
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Serves: 4 servings
 
Ingredients
  • 1 pork tenderloin, silverskin removed, trimmed
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
  • 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • 3 tablespoons unsalted butter, divided
  • 2 medium shallots, minced
  • 1 pound Cremini mushrooms, sliced thin
  • 1 tablespoon all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 cup dry Marsala
  • 1 cup chicken broth
  • 3 tablespoons heavy cream
  • 1/4 cup fresh parsley, chopped
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 350 F.
  2. Cut the tenderloins into 2" rounds. Flatten slightly and season with salt and pepper.
  3. Heat the oil and one tablespoon of the butter in a large oven-proof skillet (I prefer to use cast iron for this). Get the oil as hot as possible without smoking.
  4. Add the pork and sear on both sides, 2-3 minutes per side. Remove to a plate.
  5. Reduce heat to medium and add the remaining butter to the skillet. Melt.
  6. Add the shallot and a pinch of salt and saute for 30 seconds. Use a flat spatula (a wooden spoon works great) to scrape up any yummy bits stuck to the bottom of the pan.
  7. Add the mushrooms and saute until golden brown and the moisture is released and evaporated, 5-7 minutes.
  8. Sprinkle with salt and the flour.
  9. Slowly stir in the Marsala until it is nearly evaporated.
  10. Stir in the chicken broth. Reduce heat to a simmer and let simmer until reduced by half.
  11. Stir in the cream and parsley. Add the pork and any accumulated juices back to the pan.
  12. Place in the oven and cook until the internal temperature reaches 155-165 F.
  13. Season with salt and pepper.
  14. Serve pork with plenty of the gravy and mushrooms.

Ham and Swiss Po’ Boy

I’m slowly (but surely) perfecting my homemade po’ boy bread. It has the perfect thin, but crunchy, crust, with a warm, soft inside. I just need to work on my dough rolling skills. Even still, that lack of loaf perfection doesn’t stop me from enjoying an absolutely great ham and Swiss po’ boy. The ham has a nice little spicy kick, the cheese just starts to melt. All topped with crunchy fresh lettuce mixed with spicy Creole mustard and fresh chopped tomatoes.

I always grab a bag (or two) of Zapp’s chips to go with my po’ boys. They have the best crunch and flavor, plus it’s a tradition to eat Zapp’s with a po’ boy. The last time (sadly, a long time ago) I was in New Orleans I had Zapp’s with my po’ boys, so I do the same at home. Food memories like that are the best, you know?

Ham and Swiss Po' Boy
Author: 
Recipe type: Main
Cuisine: American
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 1 serving
 
Ingredients
For the po boy
  • 1 6" loaf French bread
  • 1/4 pound thin sliced ham sandwich meat
  • 1 teaspoon Cajun seasoning
  • 2 slices Swiss cheese, divided
  • 2/3 cup lettuce dressing (see below)
  • 1 cup chopped tomato
For the lettuce mixture
  • 2 tablespoons mayonnaise
  • 1 tablespoon Creole mustard
  • 1/2 teaspoon (or more, to taste) Louisiana hot sauce
  • 1 teaspoon minced fresh garlic
  • 2/3 cup shredded and chopped iceberg lettuce
Instructions
For the po boy
  1. Slice bread horizontally.
  2. Place sandwich meat in a medium skillet over medium heat.
  3. Sprinkle with the Cajun seasoning and warm the meat thoroughly. Transfer to the bottom bread half.
  4. Add cheese and top with the lettuce dressing, tomato, and top bread half. Devour.
For the lettuce mixture
  1. Place all ingredients in a medium bowl and fold to combine.