The Meatwave: Barbecue & Grilling Recipes, Reviews, Tips, and Tricks

Sandwiches

Tue Oct 29, 2013

Meatball Parmesan Hero

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Meatball Parm

My day job has me commuting up to the Bronx Monday through Friday, where my office's close proximity to Arthur Ave finds me awash in great Italian cured meat sandwiches, pastas, and pizza to stuff me silly at lunch. For those not familiar with the area, Arthur Ave is boastingly known as "The Real Little Italy," and pretty rightfully so. While the few blocks that comprise Little Italy in Manhattan are a bona fide tourist trap, up in the Bronx, "The Ave" is lined with shops where you can find homemade sopressata hanging from the ceiling, fresh mozzarella that you can watch being pulled as you order, and cannolis only filled on demand—all done with a sense of tradition and without a drop of pretension. So it's kind of dumbfounding why so many chicken, eggplant, or meatball parmesan heroes up there fail miserably.

Too often these shops fry up the main ingredient and let it sit in a sea of tomato sauce, topped with mozzarella, nestled in a steam table all day. By the time its piled into a roll and served, any trace of crunch from the breadcrumb coating has vanished and the entire thing is a mushy, unappealing mess. There's one place that gets it right though.

Tucked into the back corner of the Arthur Avenue market is Cafe al Mercato, where each ingredient is kept separate, only assemble on order, combined in the right balance between sauce, cheese, meat, and bread. Then the entire thing is heated in the oven. This creates a sandwich with awesome flavor and texture—a parm hero that, while not the best in the world, is incredibly satisfying. Knowing that right procedure to a successful parm, I took to the task of making a great one at home—on the grill (of course).

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Tue Aug 6, 2013

Smoked Bologna

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Smoked Bologna

I'm fresh of a weekend spent away at a barbecue competition, and man does all that work and travel take a hell of a lot out of you. It obviously won't rob me of the desire to grill and smoke—it only makes that stronger—but it does leave me feeling like I need to kick back and take things easy for a week or two. So if I want to combine smoking as well as east, it doesn't come much more simple than smoked bologna.

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Tue Jul 2, 2013

Italian Party Panini

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Italian Party Panini

Fourth of July is the biggest grilling holiday of the year, making it a celebration of the tradition of cooking over a live fire as much as it about our independence. You can't talk of this grand American holiday without mention of one of the pinnacles of our society—excess. A prime example of this is the giant party sub, which is impractical, overly expensive, and often trades quality for quantity, all reasons we love it so much. So on this Fourth, why not combine a few symbols of American culture, ingenuity, and glut and grill an oversized Italian party panini, only I insure you this one is a sandwich of the highest order.

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Tue Mar 19, 2013

Vietnamese Steak Banh Mi

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We Shall Meat Again Someday

I was late to jump on the banh mi bandwagon, so much so that the all out craze they had going so many years ago was breathing its last breath when I finally joined. Still, my first taste of one of these Vietnamese sandwiches was a revelation—the contrast between the sweet and salty meat, pickled diakons and carrots, fresh cilantro, and airy, crusty bread was nothing short of spectacular. Whether in or out of food fashion, I still think these are royalty among sandwiches, deserving continued prominence, which is why I'm bringing you this grilled steak banh mi today.

More and recipe after the jump >>

Tue Aug 23, 2011

Blackened Chicken Sandwiches

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Meatomic Bomb

If you're a Meatwave veteran, you may have noticed that after a single skinless, boneless chicken breast recipe in the early days, this piece of meat has become long absent from the blog. This is no coincidence, as I quickly learned this chicken part does not make good grilling—it's too easy to end up with a dry, flavorless piece of meat. So does that discredit the skinless, boneless breast from grilling altogether? I say no, and this blackened chicken sandwich is solid proof of that.

More and recipe after the jump >>