No vegan needs to miss out on the indulgence that is a battered, fried, cheesy, crunchy Mozzarella in Carrozza toasted sandwich. This Italian street food is usually filled with dairy mozzarella, coated in egg wash and then fried until crunchy. We're using a few simple ingredients to make this a vegan version to remember.
The origins of Mozzarella in Carrozza begin in southern Italy, in particular the Campania region. But like many recipes it has spread throughout the country (not to mention the world). Stringy melted mozzarella is a big feature in the traditional dairy version. Of course, vegan cheese behaves a little differently than dairy, but you can still create a non-dairy gooey cheese in two ways. Buy a top quality vegan mozzarella that melts. Or make your own pre-melted mozzarella (see recipe below). To replicate the egg wash, we’re using a batter of chickpea flour and kala namak for the eggy flavour. Some versions coat in breadcrumbs for that extra crunch and many cooks like to remove the crust. Recipe from cookbook, Discovering Vegan Italian.
MOZZARELLA IN CARROZZA
Fried cheese sandwich
Serves 2 | 15 minutes
⅓ cup chickpea flour
cracked black pepper
½ teaspoon kala namak or salt
⅓ cup plain (all purpose) flour
4 slices of Italian style bread (or any white bread)
100g vegan mozzarella, thinly sliced (or homemade 'mozzarella' - see recipe below)
oil for frying, such as sunflower, olive or canola
Sift the chickpea flour into a bowl and whisk in approximately ⅓ cup of water until you have a smooth batter. Season with pepper and kala namak or salt.
Pour the plain flour into another bowl.
Lay out your bread slices. You may like to keep on the crusts for a more rustic style, or trim them off.
Evenly press the mozzarella onto the bread slices. Then press the slices together to form two sandwiches.
First, coat the whole sandwiches in the flour. Shake off the excess.
Now dip the sandwiches into the chickpea ‘egg’ batter, coating all sides, allowing the batter to soak into the bread. Drip away the excess batter. Place onto baking paper or a plate while you heat the oil.
In a frypan, heat oil to a high-ish heat. You may need 500ml of oil, depending on the size of your pan. Fry the sandwiches on all sides, including the crusts, until golden brown.
Drain on absorbent paper and serve hot for full crunch impact!
HOMEMADE MOZZARELLA SAUCE
Instead of buying mozzarella, you can make 1 batch of this mozzarella sauce and then layer over the bread slices, before pressing into sandwiches and following the recipe above from Step 5.
1 cup soy milk
2 tablespoons tapioca starch
½ cup neutral flavoured vegetable oil, like sunflower
3 tablespoons nutritional yeast flakes
½ teaspoon salt or to taste
1 teaspoon onion powder, optional
In a medium saucepan, over a medium heat, pour in the soy milk and immediately whisk in the tapioca starch until dissolved. Add the remaining ingredients and stir to combine.
As the sauce heats, stir often until it turns thick and slightly stretchy. It is now ready to dollop onto your bread to replace sliced mozzarella. Hint: The sauce can also be swirled through pasta or dolloped onto pizza.