Here’s an Italian twist on the wildly popular grilled cheese sandwich, mozzarella in carozza (mozzarella in a cart).
My Dad made this Neapolitan treat when I was a kid and I still make it often.
You have to construct the “cart” to carry the mozzarella. I skewer the corners of the sandwich with toothpicks so the mozzarella doesn’t fall out when I dip it in the egg wash and fry it in the pan.
Forget about tomato soup on the side with this grilled cheese. A quick, lemon, caper and anchovy sauce is the perfect companion for the melted mozzerella oozing out of the egg-dipped bread.
My recipe is for 2 at the table. Make more if you need them. The recipe is scalable. Serve a salad on the side and you have a meal.
- 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
- 1 garlic clove, chopped
- 1 anchovy fillet
- 1 tablespoon capers
- 1 tablespoon unsalted butter
- ¼ cup dry white wine
- 1 tablespoon lemon juice
- 4 thin slices of sturdy white or whole wheat bread, crust removed
- 6 ounces fresh mozzarella, sliced
- flour for dusting
- 1 egg
- 1 tablespoon of water or milk
- Canola oil (or your favorite) for frying
- 1tablespoon Italian flat parsley, chopped
- Make the sauce.
- Put the olive oil and garlic in a sauté pan over medium-high heat and cook until the garlic just starts to color.
- Add the anchovies and capers and stir until the anchovy dissolves.
- Add the butter and stir until melted.
- Pour in the white wine and lemon juice and simmer until the sauce is reduced by half and thickens. Set aside.
- Lay out 2 slices of bread on a work surface and cover each with a layer of sliced mozzarella. Don’t let the mozzarella hang over the edge of the bread.
- Lay a bread slice on top and skewer each corner with a toothpick to hold the sandwich together.
- Put the flour on a dish.
- Beat the egg and water together in a shallow bowl.
- Put a about a ¼ inch of vegetable oil in a skillet and heat over medium heat. (Test the oil with a crust of bread. It’s hot enough if the crust sizzles.)
- Dredge the sandwiches in the flour. Be sure to cover both sides and the edges too. Tap off the excess flour.
- Dip both sides of the sandwich in the egg. Moisten the sides too. (I use my hands but use tongs to maneuver the sandwich if you wish.)
- When the oil is hot enough, put the sandwiches in the saute pan and fry until they are golden brown on both sides and the mozzarella is melted, a minute or 2 on each side.
- Put the sandwiches on paper towel to drain.
- Heat the sauce, stir in the parsley and spoon some on each plate.
- Cut the sandwiches in half and put them on the plates.
- Serve immediately.