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Italian Deli-Stuffed Loaf

Make one huge sandwich to feed a crowd

Instead of making six separate sandwiches, make one large filled loaf and then slice it to serve — every slice is packed full of flavorsome ingredients. To save time you could buy the chargrilled vegetables from a deli or supermarket, although I usually prefer to make my own. You could also use an oblong loaf if you can’t find a round one. — Katy Holder, author of A Moveable Feast


  • 1 large red capsicum (pepper), halved and seeded (or 3 1/2 ounces bought chargrilled capsicum, drained)
  • 1 large zucchini (courgette), halved and thinly sliced lengthways (or 3 1/2 ounces bought chargrilled zucchini, drained)
  • 2 Tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 round loaf, about 8 3/4 inches in diameter
  • 1-2 Tablespoon pesto
  • 1 1/2 Ounce rocket (arugula) leaves
  • 4 Ounces buffalo mozzarella, sliced
  • 3 1/2 Ounces salami or good-quality ham, thinly sliced
  • Handful basil leaves
  • 1 Tablespoon extra virgin olive oil (optional)


Preheat a grill (broiler) to high. Squash the capsicum halves to flatten them, then place under the hot grill, skin side up. Grill until the skin is completely blackened. Place in a plastic bag, seal the bag, and leave for 15 minutes. Rub or peel off the skin (do not rinse), then cut the capsicum into 3/4-inch-wide strips and set aside.

Meanwhile, heat a chargrill pan over medium heat. Brush the zucchini slices on each side with oil and chargrill until softened.

Slice off the top of the loaf, about 1 1/4 inches from the top, and reserve this to use as a lid. Hollow out the loaf, leaving about a 3/4-inch border all the way around. (You can use the scooped-out bread to make breadcrumbs.)

Brush the entire inside of the bread and the bottom of the lid with pesto and season with sea salt and freshly ground black pepper. Place the rocket (arugula) in the base, then top with the chargrilled zucchini, making an even layer. Top with the mozzarella, then the salami, and next the red capsicum. Scatter with the basil leaves and drizzle the extra-virgin olive oil over the top, if you like. Cover with the lid.

Wrap the loaf in plastic wrap and put on a plate. Place a second plate on top and put a tin or two on top of the plate to weigh it down slightly. Leave in the fridge for 1 hour, or up to 4 hours, to allow the flavors to develop.

Wrap the loaf in a clean tea towel (dish towel) to transport it, and slice into thick wedges to serve.

Recipes excerpted with permission from A Moveable Feast by Katy Holder (Hardie Grant, 2017)