Sandwiches remain one of the ultimate go-to comfort foods.
And chef Emeril Lagasse is sharing some of his favorite renditions in his latest book "Emeril's Kicked-Up Sandwiches: Stacked with Flavor."
The celebrity chef and restaurateur said there's something about a sandwich that draws food lovers of all types. Sandwiches, he said, are cross-cultural, comforting and satisfying.
"Every culture has a sandwich," he said, stressing everybody loves a good sandwich packed with assorted ingredients.
In his book he offers everything from good old-fashioned Egg Salad Supreme and White Bean Hummus with Roasted Veggies on Lavash to BBQ Pork Ribs, Chinese Style; Tunisian Lamb Burger; Falafel with Cucumber, Onion, and Tomato Salad; and Barbacoa Tacos.
"I had a lot of childhood memories surrounding sandwiches," Lagasse said. His favorite?
"The Columbia Street Grinder," he said. Lagasse fondly remembers eating the delicious sandwich made with Portuguese bread and filled with spicy ham, salami, provolone cheese and more on Columbia Street in his home town of Fall River, Mass.
"Though Columbia Street can't be matched, I've tried my best to devise a recipe that comes close, and I think this one hits the mark," he writes about the grinder recipe in his book.
Another favorite of Lagasse's is a sandwich that's definitely popular in his beloved New Orleans.
"I love Po' boys and so does my family," Lagasse said. He added his son E.J. also enjoys turkey paninis.
Through his book, Lagasse said, he thought it would be great to highlight sandwiches and show how American families really can and do make great meals out of them.
Along with the sandwich recipes, Lagasse mentioned it was important to include a chapter on breads. In the Knead Bread? chapter, home cooks will find everything from English Muffins and Honey Whole Wheat Bread to Potato Rolls and White Sandwich Bread.
In addition to this latest cookbook project, Lagasse is busy at work filming a new television series titled "Emeril's Florida." Stay tuned for future information on the show which the chef said is "not just about cooking." It's expected to debut in January.
Another project Lagasse is involved with is something that's perfect for the upcoming holidays. He recently curated a wine sampler collection for TastingRoom.com, an online retailer that allows consumers to sample and consume wine in various formats. Emeril's Holiday Party Sampler and Emeril's Everyday Sampler, features small bottles of his favorite wines from around the country. The samplers also come with his suggested food pairings and tasting notes.
"It's a pretty clever project," Lagasse said. I've always been a big fan of wine."
Lagasse fans can also see the popular chef on the current season of "Top Chef." For more information on the cookbook, wine samplers and other projects, visit emerils.com or TastingRoom.com
Try your hand at this recipe from Lagasse's latest book.
Egg Salad Supreme
12 hard-boiled eggs
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon dry mustard
1/2 teaspoon hot Hungarian paprika
1/4 cup minced shallot
1/4 cup chopped green onion or fresh parsley leaves
1/4 cup minced celery
1/2 cup mayonnaise, homemade or store-bought
12 slices White Sandwich Bread
DIRECTIONS: Roughly chop the eggs and place them in a mixing bowl. Add the salt, mustard, paprika, shallot, green onion, celery, and mayonnaise. Stir with a rubber spatula or a spoon until very well blended. Transfer to a container, cover, and refrigerate for at least 2 hours and up to 4 days. Spread 1/3 to 1/2 cup of the egg salad between 2 slices of bread. Repeat with the remaining salad and bread.