There aren't many sandwiches I'm willing to put on a pedestal. Chef Symon really hit the nail on the head with this one. The balance of flavor is perfect, and it really is appropriate for breakfast, lunch or dinner. It can be difficult to find wholesome proteins for vegetarian sandwiches, I rarely think to use egg!
The flavor combination is not uncommon, I did leave off the soppressata and opted to use tomatoes, completing the caprese trio. The fresh mozzarella melts perfectly and is so smooth and stretchy. However, what really makes this sandwich come to life is his Shasha Sauce.
When I was growing up, we moved into a newly constructed house on a culdesac in the quaint town of St. James, NY. Our address was 2 Tusa Court... so simple! I don't understand why houses have to have so many digits these days... but I digress.
The second family to move in (yes, at 4 Tusa Court) and had a daughter and son who were a bit older than my older sister and me. Our families got along really well, and we spent many nights playing together. Kristine (my sister) looked up to Kelly, and would do whatever she told her to. She also had a little crush on Matt, who was her age. The three of them would often leave me out, or give me the bad jobs when we were playing. For example, when they played hospital, Kelly would be doctor, Matt would be patient, Kristine would be nurse, and I was the toilet bowl cleaner. And my mom wonders why it's my least favorite chore... I've been doing it since I was 5!
One of our favorite things (which I'm sure our parents loved) was a game called "mix random condiments in a glass and make Ashlee drink it." It would always start with pickles or pickle juice, and then go as far as toothpaste or paper towel bits.... but I drank it!
As I was making the Shasha Sauce, I was reminded of those drinks I was forced to drink. Banana peppers, vinegar, sugar, garlic, mustard.... what?! It's definitely something I would never, ever think to create. It's essentially a tangy, sweet, spicy banana pepper spread, but the layers of flavor are so much deeper than a smear of mustard and a few picked peppers.
He says it has a month long shelf life in the fridge, so mine is in a jar in there. And every time I see it, I can't help but laugh and remember my poor, 6 year old self drinking toothpaste and pickle shakes...
Caprese Fried Egg Sandwich with Shasha Sauce
from Live to Cook by Michael Symon
2 slices sourdough bread (I used Kalamata Olive Sourdough from Whole Foods Bakery)
2 slices fresh mozzarella
1 slice of paper thin red onion
2 small tomatoes, sliced
10 basil leaves
1 1/2 c. banana pepper rings in vinegar
2 garlic cloves, smashed
1/2 c. yellow mustard
1/4 c. pure cane sugar
1/4 c. AP flour
1/2 c. water
First, make Shasha Sauce.
Add banana peppers, garlic and mustard to a blender, puree.
Add to a small stock pot, heat over high.
Add sugar, stir to dissolve.
Whisk flour and water in a small dish, pour into sauce pot, stir to combine.
Turn heat to low, cook for 15 minutes, stirring every few minutes.
Cool, pour into a jar and keep in the refrigerator for up to a month.
Heat a frying pan over medium heat, butter and crack in eggs.
Fry to desired doneness, flip, top with mozzarella, cover and turn heat off.
Toast bread, slather with Shasha sauce, eggs, tomatoes, basil and onions.
Thank you to my fellow Symon Sundays participants: