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Basil Red Pepper Sandwiches

 Basil Red Pepper Sandwiches
Refreshing basil leaves dress up this hot and hearty sandwich from our Test Kitchen. With a tangy olive spread, sweet peppers and mozzarella cheese, the hand-held meals are ideal for picnics or tailgating.
4 ServingsPrep/Total Time: 25 min.


  • 1 loaf (1 pound) unsliced Italian bread
  • 1 to 2 teaspoons grated lemon peel
  • 2 tablespoons plus 1 teaspoon olive oil, divided
  • 8 slices part-skim mozzarella cheese
  • 4 large pieces roasted sweet red peppers, patted dry
  • 12 fresh basil leaves
  • 1/2 cup chopped pitted green olives


  • Cut the top half off the loaf of bread; carefully hollow out top and
  • bottom, leaving a 3/4-in. shell (save removed bread for another
  • use).
  • In a small bowl, combine lemon and 2 tablespoons oil. Spread over the
  • cut side of bread top. Drizzle remaining oil inside bread bottom.
  • Layer with the cheese, red pepper, basil and olives. Replace bread
  • top. Wrap in foil.
  • Bake at 350° for 10-12 minutes or until cheese is melted. Slice
  • before serving. Yield: 4 servings.
Nutritional Facts: 1 serving (1 each) equals 570 calories, 27 g fat (9 g saturated fat), 44 mg cholesterol, 1,248 mg sodium, 60 g carbohydrate, 3 g fiber, 21 g protein.