Cast Iron

Italian Sausage and Ratatouille Sub

August 10, 2011
4 Ratings
  • Makes 6 sandwiches
Author Notes

When I lived in the North End of Boston, every summer weekend brought another feast honoring a favored saint. I counted on the vendors for my Friday night dinners. The grilled Italian Sausages with Onions and Peppers on a roll were just about my favorite choice. Ratatouille is one of my favorite summer foods. Every year I make a huuuuuge batch from the recipe I brought back from Nice many years ago. One unique thing about my recipe is that anchovies are substituted for any possible salt! This recipe fills several jars which I share with friends and (since it keeps so well) use to enhance many dishes; pasta, crostini, salads, and so forth. The first time I subbed Ratatouille for the peppers in the traditional sausage sandwich, my friends pronounced it a winner. I hope you like it, too! - ChefJune —ChefJune

Test Kitchen Notes

ChefJune’s eureka moment of inspiration makes for a great summer sandwich. (Just as tasty in the winter I’m sure, but not as easy to hose yourself down.) The ratatouille recipe is classic and easy to prepare (note: the ingredient list omits garlic but the instructions include it – I used about 8 cloves chopped.) I love the minimal oil content. The flavors are really clean. Personal preference might up the anchovies next time. The specified French baguette was a little too chewy for me, so I tried a country roll for my second one and that was perfect. I also halved the sausage which made it a little easier to eat. A whole lot of messy fun and delicious too! Brava! - deanna1001 —deanna1001

What You'll Need
  • First you have to make the Ratatouille
  • 6 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 4 red onions, thinly sliced
  • 6 garlic cloves peeled and chopped
  • 3 large eggplants, peeled and cubed
  • 2 green peppers seeded and cubed
  • 2 sweet red peppers, seeded and cubed
  • 5 ripe tomatoes peeled, seeded and diced
  • 4 zucchini, well scrubbed
  • 5 anchovy fillets, well drained and finely chopped
  • Freshly ground black pepper to taste
  • 2 tablespoons capers, rinsed and well drained
  • Now, assemble your Sandwiches!
  • 6 sweet Italian sausages
  • 3 small French baguettes, cut in half
  • 2 cups Ratatouille. This is a VERY messy sandwich!
  • Extra-virgin olive oil
  1. First you have to make the Ratatouille
  2. Heat the oil in a 9-to 10-quart pot. Add the onion and garlic and sauté until the onion is translucent. Meanwhile, peel and cube the eggplant. Using a vegetable peeler, peel stripes in the zucchini skins. Slice diagonally in large chunks.
  3. Add the eggplant and green and red peppers to the pot, cover and cook slowly about 1 hour.
  4. Add the tomatoes, squash and anchovies. Simmer uncovered over medium low heat until the mixture is thick. This may take a couple of hours. Season with freshly ground black pepper to taste. Add capers during the last fifteen (15) minutes of cooking. The mixture should cook until the vegetables seem to have melted together. Serve hot or cold.
  1. Now, assemble your Sandwiches!
  2. Poke the sausages with a fork on two sides, and simmer in about 2 inches of water for 10 minutes, or until cooked through. Drain well. Just before ready to serve, heat a grill or a heavy cast iron skillet. Brown the sausages well on all sides.
  3. Slice the baguettes in half, then in half lengthwise. Scoop out some of the bread on one side to make a cradle for the sausage. Drizzle a little extra virgin olive oil on the bread. Place one grilled sausage in each half of the bread. Cover with warm ratatouille, and top with the rest of the bread. Messy, but delicious!
  4. We like a red Pic St. Loup from the Languedoc with these sandwiches.

See what other Food52ers are saying.

  • ChefJune
  • deanna1001
30+ years a chef, educator, writer, consultant, "winie," travel guide/coordinator

5 Reviews

ChefJune August 26, 2011
How did I omit the garlic? It's supposed to be in the Ratatouille. I shall have to go in and fix that.
deanna1001 August 26, 2011
Ahhh - I see that as usual I put more garlic in than you have now specified...but I swear it was delicious! I'm still happily eating the ratatouille on croutons, in omelets and standing in front of the fridge with a fork in hand.
ChefJune August 27, 2011
Ah, Deanna! A girl after my own heart. I swear sometimes Ratatouille tastes best eating forkfuls from the jar. The amount of garlic is not written in stone. Actually, none of the amounts are for that recipe. Sometimes there's more zucchini, or more eggplant. Just depends on what's in the fridge (or in the market).
deanna1001 August 21, 2011
ChefJune August 21, 2011
Deanna1001: Grazie mille for the gorgeous photo. So glad you like them. :>D