Sunday, January 15, 2012

roasted eggplant muffaletta on homemade ciabatta bread and crunchy broccoli salad

Tonight's dinner was totally amazing, if I may say so myself! :) The hubby says so too.

I've been craving ciabatta bread (and having frequent day dreams in regard to one I made maybe a year back) following a recipe I found somewhere online. Well, I did a little searching and found the recipe again. I remember this bread being pretty fool-proof to make (I'm not generally very good at making bread). I located the recipe --> here.

I had a stay-at-home sunday today, the perfect kind of day to let some dough rise on the counter while lounging around trying to stay warm (and smell fresh bread in the house!). This bread is so easy to make, definitely as easy as I remember!!! The only snag was the directions call for measuring by weight... I don't have a scale so I kinda guessed with measurements. I used 4 cups of flour (Organic Unbleached White All-Purpose), and about 2 tsp salt, but then the dough was too dry and I needed to add way more than the suggested 2 cups of water. I probably used around 3 cups of water total in order to create a real goopy wet dough/batter/mixture. I'd def recommend adding water until the dough is the consistency of slightly thick pancake batter.

Also, I baked mine on a pizza stone. I was hoping that would assist with nice thick crust ( and it did!! Score.). This came out way way yummy! The inside was chewy, flavorful and full of delightful big bubbles, with a thick, chewy crust.  With such yummy bread, dinner just needed to be sandwiches. I decided to roast some eggplant, and use other sandwich fillings like olive salad and roasted red peppers.

Great dinner. I served them with our most favorite side dish: crunchy broccoli salad. I didn't really set out with any recipe in mind, but I'll post what I did this time. This was my type of dinner, slightly indulgent (what's more indulgent than fresh bread??) and hearty, but still full of veggies!

roasted eggplant muffaletta sandwich


1 loaf fresh made ciabatta bread 
1 eggplant, sliced into thin rounds
olive oil
roasted red peppers (I used jarred)
muffaletta chopped olive salad mix

-set oven to 425 degrees
-marinade slices of eggplant in olive oil balsamic and spices (i used a garlic herb spice mix) for 1/2 an hour
-roasted eggplant for 10 min, flip then roast for 5 more minutes
-slice bread, slather with olive salad and vegenaise, then stack on veggies!! yum :)

(most amazing) crunchy broccoli salad


2 crowns broccoli, broken into small florets (don't use stem, save for something else! OR ELSE!)
1/4 sweet onion, sliced into thin ribbons
1/3 cup raisins
1/3 cup roasted peanuts
1/3 cup bacon bits (obviously vegan variety, the store brand around here just happen to be vegan anyway)
vegenaise, mustard, poppy seeds, agave nectar

-mix dressing together (i didn't really measure, 1/2-3/4 c. vegenaise + 2 Tb mustard +1 Tb poppy and  squirt of agave), season with black pepper and salt
-add with everything else (except bacon bits), let sit in fridge for at least 30 min, add bacon bits at last minute so they stay nice and crispy
-WARNING: this stuff is addictive! 

Enjoy :) 

Make the bread! Do it!

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