Cook the Book: Salame ala Diavolo

Cook the Book: Salame ala Diavolo

[Photograph: Steve Legato]

We've had an ongoing love affair with Danny Meyer's Roman-inspired Maialino since day one. We've raved about their breakfast, cozied up to the bar for glorious happy hour snacks and glasses of Nebbiolo. So, it was pretty much a given that chef Nick Anderer's sandwich-making skills were going to be equally top-notch.

Salame ala Diavolo is Anderer's contribution to The Big New York Sandwich Book but you're not going to find it on Maialino's lunch menu. It's the kind of sandwich you could assume that he and his kitchen crew munch on—a play on an Italian sub assembled from salumi scraps and focaccia ends that haven't made it to the bread basket, with a pepper-olive relish that ties it all together.

Whether served up on slices of thin pizza bianca or squishy squares of rosemary focaccia, it's all about the right balance of porky prosciutto and mortadella, sharp provolone, and peppery arugula dressed with quick pickled cherry peppers.

Reprinted with permission from The Big New York Sandwich Book by Sara Reistad-Long and Jean Tang, copyright © 2011. Published by Running Press.

  • Yield:4
  • Active time: 15 minutes
  • Total time:15 minutes


  • Sandwich:
  • 8 tablespoons olive oil
  • 8 tablespoons red wine vinegar
  • 6 tablespoon green olives, chopped (Castelvetranois a good variety if you can find it)
  • 2 tablespoons or more chopped Pickled Peppers, plus 4 tablespoon of the pickling liquid (recipe follows)
  • 4 (5 × 5-inch) pieces pizza bianca or rosemary focaccia, split in half
  • Small handful arugula
  • 12 thin slices provolone cheese
  • 8 thin slices prosciutto
  • 8 thin slices mortadella
  • Pickled Peppers:
  • 20 hot cherry peppers
  • Olive oil, to taste
  • 5 cups Champagne vinegar
  • 1 cup water
  • 4 tablespoons kosher salt
  • 3 tablespoons sugar
  • 2 garlic cloves
  • 1 tablespoon black peppercorns
  • 2 sprigs thyme
  • 1 bay leaf


  1. 1.

    For the Pickled Peppers: Preheat oven to 500°F. Slit the peppers lengthwise but leave whole overall. Put them on a baking sheet. Lightly dress the peppers in olive oil and roast them in the oven for 10 minutes, or until slightly softened. Combine the vinegar, water, salt, sugar, cloves, peppercorns, thyme, and bay leaf together in a pot and bring it all to a boil on the burner. Pour the mixture over the peppers. Let cool, uncovered, at room temperature. Store in the refrigerator until ready to use. 

  2. 2.

    For the Sandwich: Mix the olive oil, vinegar, chopped olives, peppers, and pickling liquid. Spread that mixture on the inside of all the bread slices, reserving a little to toss with the arugula. Onto the bottom sandwich halves, alternate layers of cheese and meat. Top each sandwich off with arugula, and close with the top half of bread. Slice in half or serve as one whole square.