December 7, 2006


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Southeast U.S. culture, in sandwich form
Sausage Heaven takes you to Miami and New Orleans
By SusanReilly

Far from the smoky jazz of New Orleans and the thumping Latino vibe of Miami, muffoletta and cubano sandwiches have arrived in the Queen City.

Inspired by the sandwiches he ate in New Orleans and Miami, Marc Rousseau did extensive research on the history and flavors of these classics and added them to his menu at Sausage Heaven in Manchester.

Despite the lack of sausage in either sandwich, the standout flavors of the muffoletta and cubano made him explore ways to get the flavors so far from the original sources.

The muffoletta ($6.99 for a half, $11.99 for a whole) is a Sicilian sandwich served on a 10-inch round of bread, sort of like ciabatta, but that is truly unique to the sandwich. According to Rousseau, the bread has to be very dense, to stand up to the olive oil. Also, it has an olive salad that lends to the savory appeal.

Rousseau found a local baker who would make him authentic muffoletta bread and he perfected the olive salad recipe.

The muffoletta is piled high with Mortadella, ham, hard salami, hot Cappicola ham, provolone and mozzarella and the olive salad.

For the cubano ($7.50), Rousseau experimented with mojo sauce and has come up with a recipe that is authentic.

The cubano is filled with roasted, marinated pork sliced thin, layers of ham, sliced pickles and Swiss cheese along with the mojo sauce before it is toasted.

So far, I have had people from New Orleans and south Florida come in and try the sandwiches and they love them. They have told me that I have authentic recipes here, he said.

Sausage Heaven serves sandwiches Tuesday through Friday from 11 a.m. until 2 p.m. It is best if you phone in your order.

Also, all sandwiches from Sausage Heaven come with a huge pickle that is perfection.

What is a cubano sandwich?
The cubano sandwich, also known as the Cuban, is a sandwich in south Florida, where many Cubans have settled since the early 20th century. These tasty, toasted sandwiches can be found in most restaurants in Miami, but the best places to buy them are from the street corner snack bars, called loncherias.

An authentic cubano is a submarine-style layering of ham, roast pork, cheese, and pickle between a sliced length of Cuban bread. The key to a great, versus a good, Cuban sandwich lies in the grilling. A great Cuban sandwich is grilled in a sandwich press (called a plancha) until the ham, pork, and pickles have warmed in their own steam (the steady application of heat and weight fuse the meat, cheese, and bread into a delectable and compact treat).

What is a muffoletta?
Muffoletta sandwiches are found all over New Orleans from small grocery markets to delis and pool halls. The muffoletta is a Sicilian sandwich made with a dense, round, 10-inch loaf filled with Italian salami, a unique olive-type salad, cheese, Italian ham, and freshly minced garlic. The key ingredient is the olive salad that gives the sandwich its unique flavor. An authentic muffoletta sandwich must always be served at room temperature, never toasted; it is considered blasphemy to heat the sandwich, said Rousseau.

Sausage Heaven
33 Elm St., Manchester, 606-6657
Hours: Lunch is served Tuesday through Friday from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. The store is open Tuesday through Friday, 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. ,and Saturday, 10 a.m. to 2 p.m..

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A year of eats

All-you-can-read guide to breakfast
A bagel by any other l
A picnic its romance with ants
A sweet burst of summer, in stages
Beef, It's What's For Dinner, Lunch, And Dessert
Be it ever so humble, the burger rules
Blockbuster snacks for your movie
Box Of Chocolates
C Is For Cookie And Christmas And Cool Combo
Celebrating A Holiday For The Rest Of Us
Celebrate Easter In A Sugar Coma
Chat And Chew

Chinese soup is magic
Chocolate cake makes everything better
Chocolate, Part II
Competition flows like chocolate
Corn Flake Chicken, Honeycomb Salad
Dining at the "Your House Bistro"
Don't Dread The Bread
Dress Up Your Next Meal
Drinking Out Of The Box
Eating Your Way Back To Health
Enter Soup
Experiments With Very Bad Brownies
Feeding A Crowd The Morning After
Follow the cider house rules
Fresh Herbs
Go ahead run silent, run deep
Goodbye corn syrup, hello organic oatmeal
Go Indian for Thanksgiving
Grilled Cheese Junkie

Halloween candy for grown-ups
Have a Happy Meal and a happier wallet
Holiday Cookies - The Easy Way
Holiday Potluck 101-Tips For The Kitchen Novice
Home-Based Date
How do you like them apples?
In-A-Pinch Love Feast
It's not easy to be cheesy
Its not Christmas without tamales
Lest We Forget The Humble Squash
Keeping your cool while you eat
Living through your salad days

Looking Beyond The Hot Dog Stand
Lunching your way to a less toxic you
Meat's meat and a man's gotta eat

Moist and delicious chicken no, really
Oatmeal Cookies, The Miracle Cure
Oscar Night, When The Stars Come Out To Eat

Offering Up A Slice Of Teriyaki Pie
Pot Pies Are Darn Tasty
Pumpkin-Flavored Treats
Small Plates Are The Next Big Thing
Speedy 'za not pie in the sky
Steak: its whats for dinner, again
Summer coolers, just add sunlight
Summer Squash
Super Bowl Grub
Take A Walk On The Dark Side
Taste of Manchester Event
The Cosmopolitan
The joys of a simple oatmeal breakfast
The return of comfort food
The One-Note Cook Book
The New American Plate Cookbook
The Stickiest, Hottest & Sweetest Of Love's Labors
The taste of retro
The Unheralded Peanut Butter Cookies
The union of sweet and heat
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