Roast Beef with Braised-Celery-and-Chile Relish on Ciabatta
- ACTIVE: 30 MIN
- TOTAL TIME: 1 HR
- SERVINGS: makes 20 sandwich halves
- 5 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
- 1 1/2 pounds celery ribs, cut crosswise into 4-inch lengths
- 1 cup water
- 1/2 cup dry white vermouth
- 1 bay leaf
- 4 each of whole pickled jalapeños and pickled whole cherry peppers from jars, chopped, plus 2 tablespoons pickling liquid
- Freshly ground pepper
- 20 slices (1/4-inch thick) of ciabatta cut from an oval loaf
- 2 large garlic cloves, halved
- 1 1/4 pounds thinly sliced roast beef or mortadella
- In a large skillet, heat 1 tablespoon of the olive oil. Add the celery, season with salt and cook over high heat, stirring a few times, until it begins to brown, about 4 minutes. Add the water, vermouth and bay leaf. Cover and cook over moderately low heat, stirring occasionally, until the celery is tender, about 20 minutes.
- Drain the celery and let cool slightly, then slice the ribs on the diagonal 1/8 inch thick. Transfer to a bowl. Stir in the chiles and their pickling liquid and the remaining 4 tablespoons of olive oil. Season the relish with salt and pepper.
- Preheat the oven to 450°. Place the bread directly on 2 oven racks and bake until lightly toasted, 3 minutes. While still warm, rub the garlic on one side of each slice. Lay the toast on a surface, garlic-rubbed side up. Top half of the slices with the roast beef and the celery-chile relish. Close the sandwiches, cut them in half and serve.
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Congratulations to Mei Lin, winner of Top Chef Season 12.