Italian Grinders with Garlic Aioli and Marathon 26

“Hoagies and grinders, hoagies and grinders. Navy beans, navy beans, navy beans.” I have been singing the Lunch Lady Land song for years without ever having known a grinder. Well, I met one. Four, actually. On the way home from Iowa last April, KP and I stopped by People’s Co-op and asked for thin slices of pretty much every deli meat they sell. Ooh, when mortadella and salami are heated together with provolone over this creamy garlic aioli sauce, tanged up by a little splash of red wine vinegar—it is divine. This sandwich shares many flavors with the muffaletta. Now knowing this little trick, I won’t have to stand in line for an hour down on Decatur at Central Grocery.

California Marathon Cali marathon

At this juncture, having run our 26th 26.2 on Saturday in the Canyonlands outside Pasadena, California, and most all 26 straight downhill, I’m not sure I can fathom standing at all. Unprecedented quadricep damage. A whole different kind of grinder.

italian grinder and me

Italian Grinders with Garlic Aioli

Adapted from Food and Wine

2 large egg yolks

1 1/2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice

2 garlic cloves, minced

1/2 cup extra-virgin olive oil



Four 8-inch light hoagie rolls, split lengthwise

1/4 cup chopped pickled hot cherry peppers

12 thin slices of mortadella

16 thin slices of Genoa salami

8 thin slices of prosciutto cotto

12 thin slices of provolone cheese

3 tomatoes, thinly sliced

1 teaspoon dried oregano

2 cups finely shredded iceberg lettuce

1/4 cup red wine vinegar

Preheat the oven to 375°. In a bowl, whisk the egg yolks with the lemon juice and garlic. Very gradually whisk in drops of the olive oil until starting to thicken, then gradually whisk in the remaining olive oil until thick. Season with salt and pepper.

Bake the closed hoagie rolls for 3 minutes, until warm. Spread the aioli on the cut sides. Top the bottom halves with the peppers, meats and cheese. Bake for 5 minutes, until the cheese melts. Top with the tomatoes and oregano and season with salt and pepper.

Pile the lettuce on top, drizzle on the vinegar and more olive oil if you’d like and serve.

italian grinders italian grinder

Haiku #310 November 6th

How can all the cars

In the world fit in the space

of these LA lanes?

Haiku #311 November 7th

It seemed such a good

Idea to run down this

Mountain at dawn break.

Haiku #312 November 8th

Lactic acid build

up in every limb can’t

keep me from dancing.

Haiku #313 November 9th

When will I learn that

red eye flights make for the worst

sober drunkenness.

Haiku #314 November 10th

Waffles for dinner,

Pajamas as uniform,

Novels for breakfast.

One thought on “Italian Grinders with Garlic Aioli and Marathon 26

  1. Congrats to you and KP on finishing your latest marathon, hooray! I hope you are having many days like that depicted in the Nov. 10 haiku during your vacation, aaahhh 🙂 XOXO

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