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Fish and Shellfish, Sandwiches


Los Angeles Times

Franklin Canyon Park, a sprawling wilderness in the Santa Monica Mountains high over Beverly Hills, is one of L.A.'s best-kept secrets -- a place to hike, to read in the shade, to relax -- a place, perchance, to picnic. A ... Read more

Total time: 30 minutes plus refrigeration time | Serves 8
  • 1/4 small fennel bulb (about 1/2 cup sliced)
  • 1 large artichoke
  • 8 breakfast radishes
  • 4 small spring onions
  • 1 tablespoon fleur de sel, divided
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  • 2 tablespoons lemon juice, divided
  • 8 quail eggs
  • 1 teaspoon vinegar
  • 4 tomatoes, very ripe
  • 8 medium (4- to 5-inch) focaccia rolls
  • 1 garlic clove
  • 1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil
  • 1/2 cup black olive tapenade
  • 12 ounces Italian tuna in olive oil, gently broken into pieces
  • 8 small anchovy fillets cured in olive oil
  • 8 baby romaine lettuce leaves (4 to 5 inches long)

Step 1Clean the fennel and slice it as thinly as possible (use a mandoline if you have one). Trim the artichoke down to the heart; slice it like the fennel. Slice the radishes and the white part of the green onions very thin.

Step 2In a small bowl combine the sliced fennel and artichoke, sprinkle some fleur de sel (about one-half teaspoon) and a touch of black pepper over them and add a tablespoon of lemon juice. Combine well and reserve. In another small bowl, combine the sliced radishes and onions, sprinkle with one-half teaspoon fleur de sel, a touch of pepper and a tablespoon of lemon juice. Reserve.

Step 3Hard-boil the quail eggs, starting with cold water and a teaspoon of vinegar in a small saucepan. Bring to a boil and cook for 3 minutes. Stop the cooking with running cold water. Peel, cut them in half and reserve.

Step 4Slice the tomatoes one-fourth inch thick. Reserve.

Step 5To assemble, slice the rolls in half horizontally. Rub both sliced sides with the garlic clove and brush with the olive oil. Spread the tapenade evenly on the tops of the rolls.

Step 6On the bottoms of the rolls, start with a layer of tomato slices, dividing evenly among the rolls. Sprinkle with the remaining 2 teaspoons fleur de sel. Working in tight layers on each bottom, add the fennel-artichoke mix, the tuna, the quail egg, the radish-onion mixture and one filet of anchovy. Finish with a leaf of baby romaine.

Step 7Cover the sandwiches with the reserved top halves. Roll the sandwiches very tightly in plastic wrap, then wrap tightly in foil.

Step 8Store overnight in the refrigerator. Cut in half and serve.

Note: From Alain Giraud. The bagnat must be prepared at least 4 hours before serving or, even better, the day before. Quail eggs are available at Asian markets. Breakfast radishes and spring onions are found at farmers markets. Regular radishes may be substituted for breakfast radishes; sweet onions, such as Maui, may be substituted for spring onions.


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