Time spent in Sussex en famille is always a treat. It’s not just the Bridge, tennis and long walks that enliven our visits but also the delicious food we eat there. This recipe entered the repertoire after Granny found it (in a weekend newspaper? 15 years ago?) and rustled it up one evening for the grandchildren’s supper. It’s cheap, filling, well balanced and a great vehicle for tomato sauce, which you can make in a big batch and use for other meals.
1 large white farmhouse loaf, ideally a day old
2 balls mozzarella
80g seasoned flour (ie mixed with salt, pepper and nutmeg)
2 eggs, beaten
Olive oil for frying – about 100ml
Basic tomato sauce – for ingredients and method, see aubergine parmigiana.
Cut eight slices of bread. (Use whatever is left over to make breadcrumbs: trim the crust, then cut the bread into large cubes and blitz in a food processor; you can dry these in the oven on a low temperature or store them fresh in the freezer for later use.)
Cut each ball of mozzarella into eight slices, then sandwich four slices between two pieces of bread to make four chunky sandwiches.
Arrange your assembly line: milk in a wide, shallow bowl; flour on a flat plate; eggs in another shallow bowl. Heat olive oil in two large frying pans and switch on the extractor fan.
Dip each sandwich in milk, then coat, in turn, in flour and egg. Fry slowly on both sides – the aim, which I don’t always achieve, is to avoid browning the outside too quickly, before the mozzarella melts. Drain on kitchen towel, then cut each sandwich into four squares. Serve with warm tomato sauce.