pressed Italian sandwich

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are you planning a picnic, going camping or just having an outdoor meal on the deck?  if so, this is an easy prepare ahead hearty sandwich that is pressed over a period of a few hours in the refrigerator.  really, anything goes with this sandwich.  choose your ingredients, and then wrap in foil and press.

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i used an oval cast iron lid over the foiled covered sandwich on a thin cutting board.  every hour or so, i opened the refrigerator and pressed down to compress the sandwich.  this technique worked very well.

to make the sandwich:  brush the inside of the ciabatta or french bread with olive oil, tapenade, or a combination of olive oil and balsamic vinegar.  season with herbs, like parsley, thyme, and basil.  layer thinly sliced turkey, ham, or a combination of meats. choices could include Genoa salami or thinly sliced prosciutto.  add provolone cheese or Swiss cheese.  Add additional condiments as desired.  I added thinly sliced dill pickles, sliced red onion, and a mix of greens.  delicious and easy. serve with salad or cole slaw and fresh fruit.  pressing makes the sandwich soft and easy to eat.  the bread no longer feels dense. if desired, some of the inner lining of the bread could even be removed before the first step of preparation.

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