Last weekend was the second in a series of shows at the Hollywood Bowl that I am attending this summer. It's been so much fun to not only see a great show under the stars, but to picnic with fabulous people beforehand. Last time I made blueberry crumb bars, but this time I decided to go the savory route. I'd had this episode of open mouth chewer, Giada's show saved since last fall because I could not get these sandwiches out of my mind. They are perfect picnic food and can be made beforehand which was great for me since I had a busy day leading up to the festivities. These sandwiches are so easy and packed with flavor. The herbes de provence pork chops are a wonderful compliment to the lemon basil mayonnaise and crunchy romaine. The creamy Fontina brings it all together. I used a bit more pork than what is written below so I used the leftovers in hearty salads with spinach, sliced grape tomatoes, feta, and lemon vinaigrette. Excellent for a weekday work lunch!
Grilled Pork and Fontina Sandwiches
(From Giada De Laurentiis)
Makes 8 sandwiches
4 (8-ounce) 1-inch thick, boneless pork loin chops
Olive oil for drizzling
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
4 teaspoons herbes de Provence
1 cup mayonnaise
1/2 cup (packed) chopped fresh basil leaves
4 teaspoons lemon zest
2 teaspoons lemon juice
2 (1 pound) loaves ciabatta bread, cut in half horizontally
8 romaine lettuce leaves
8 ounces fontina cheese, cut into 1/4-inch thick slices
Preheat a grill pan over medium-high heat. Drizzle the pork chops on both sides with olive oil and season with salt and pepper. Sprinkle about 1/2 teaspoon of herbes de Provence over each side of the pork chops. Brush the grill with oil and grill the pork chops for about 10 minutes, flipping once halfway through. Transfer the pork chops to a cutting board and let them rest for 10 minutes. Slice each chop into 1/4-inch thick slices.
In a bowl, mix the mayonnaise, basil, lemon juice, and lemon zest. Season lightly with salt and pepper.
To assemble the sandwiches: Lay the bottom half of the bread on a work surface and spread with some of the mayo. Add the lettuce leaves then arrange the cheese over the lettuce. Top the cheese with the pork slices. Spread the top half of the bread with more mayonnaise and cover the sandwiches. Slice each loaf into 4 pieces and serve.