Boulart's sandwich breads can handle a lot and here is the proof. This two-handed classic is stuffed with tender meatballs and smothered in tomato sauce and pesto.

Ingredients

  • 4 Boulart Sandwich buns

Meatballs

  • 1/2 cup (125 ml) grated Parmigiano Reggiano cheese
  • 1/2 lb (225 g) ground beef
  • 1/2 lb (225 g) ground pork
  • 1/4 cup (60 ml) dried breadcrumbs
  • 3 tablespoons (45 ml) milk
  • 1 egg
  • Pinch of red pepper flakes
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 3 tablespoons (45 ml) olive oil

Tomato sauce

  • 1 tablespoon (15 ml) olive oil
  • 1 onion, finely chopped
  • 1 carrot, finely chopped
  • 1 celery stalk, finely chopped
  • 1 garlic clove, finely chopped
  • 1 19-oz (540-ml) can of tomatoes, roughly chopped
  • Leaves of 2 thyme sprigs
  • 1 bay leaf
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper

Pesto

  • 1 1/2 cup (375 ml) fresh basil leaves
  • 3 garlic cloves
  • 1/4 cup (60 ml) pine nuts, toasted
  • 1/2 cup (125 ml) grated Parmigiano Reggiano cheese
  • 1 cup (250 ml) olive oil
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper

Preparation

Step 1:

Preheat oven to 350 °F (180 °C).

Step 2:

Meatballs: mix meat with remaining ingredients, except for the oil. Season with salt and pepper. Shape into balls [about 2 tablespoons (30 ml) each)], about 12 meatballs total.

Step 3:

In a large skillet, heat oil, and brown meatballs. Bake in oven for about 10 min. Set aside.

Step 4:

Tomato sauce: in a medium saucepan, heat oil over medium heat, and sauté onions, carrots and celery until tender. Add garlic and cook a few minutes more. Add tomatoes and remaining ingredients. Season with salt and pepper. Simmer for about 25 min. Set aside.

Step 5:

Pesto: in a food processor, purée ingredients. Set aside.

Step 6:

Assemble sandwiches: slice each bread in two horizontally, brush each bottom half with tomato sauce, and top with meatballs. Sprinkle with parmesan cheese. Spread upper half of bread with pesto, and press on top of meatballs.