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Obscene Cuisine: Deep-Dish Muffuletta Pizza, Cheesesteak On a Bagel - The Local East Village Blog - NYTimes.com


Obscene Cuisine: Deep-Dish Muffuletta Pizza, Cheesesteak On a Bagel


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muffNoah Fecks

Can we tell you about a couple of completely insane additions to the menu?

bagelDaniel Maurer Cheesesteak on a bagel

First off, Tompkins Square Bagels is running a “Philly cheesesteak on a bagel” special today. As impressive as it looks (at right), it’s to be expected of the place that brought you the infamous bagel burger. What really blows are minds and will probably pop our buttons is this: L’asso EV, itself no stranger to experimental bagels, is adding a trio of Chicago-style deep-dish pizzas to its menu, and one of them, called the Big Muff, is the pizza version of that New Orleans meat monster, the muffuletta.

We happen to have a soft spot for the muffuletta, and apparently so does L’asso’s owner Robert Benevenga, who after his last trip to N’awlins, came up with the idea of a pizza version of the sandwich. Of course, New Orleans-inspired pizza is nothing new (Two Boots, anyone?) but this is really something special: a two-inch pie formed in a buttered deep-dish pan in the following calorific manner: layers of soppressata, caciocavallo cheese, mortadella, and capicola are covered by a bed of mozzarella and then a slathering of the obligatory giardiniera, consisting of pickled olives, carrots, celery, red onions, cauliflower florets and peppers. The process is repeated all over again and then – “to add color,” says chef Joseph Lee – the pie is topped off with yet more mortadella.

The Big Muff, $16, debuts at L’asso EV on Tuesday along with a deep-dish meatball pie. You can see that one in The Local’s Flickr pool.