Pan bagna is a Mediterranean layered sandwich, often prepared in a hollowed-out round, rustic loaf. Here, eggs, anchovies, capers, basil and tomatoes – all ingredients from a classic salade niçoise – are layered in a long French loaf, then left so that the flavours can mingle and soak into the bread. It's a great picnic lunch.
- 4 medium eggs
- 1 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
- 1 garlic clove, crushed
- 1 large French bread stick, about 225 g
- 3 ripe tomatoes, sliced
- 1 red or yellow capsicum, or a mixture of both, deseeded and very thinly sliced
- 1⁄2 red onion, very thinly sliced
- 8 anchovy fillets, halved lengthways
- 1 tbsp capers, drained
- 1 handful of fresh basil
PREPARATION TIME 15 minutes
COOKING TIME 10 minutes, plus 1 hour chilling
- Place the eggs in a saucepan with enough cold water to cover them. Bring to the boil, then lower the heat slightly so that the water is boiling gently and cook the eggs for 8 minutes. Drain and rinse the eggs under cold running water to cool them quickly. Peel and slice.
- Stir the oil and garlic together in a small bowl. Cut the bread open along its length, keeping it still attached along one side, like a hinge. With the loaf opened out flat, brush the garlic-flavoured oil all over the cut sides.
- Layer the egg slices, tomatoes, capsicum, onion and anchovies in the bread stick, scattering the capers and basil leaves among the layers. Make sure that each ingredient is evenly distributed along the loaf. Season with pepper, then close up the loaf and wrap in plastic wrap.
- Leave to cool at room temperature for about 1 hour (or up to 3 hours in the refrigerator). Cut into four equal pieces before serving.