Roast Broccoli Hero Sandwiches 4.000

Dixie D. Vereen for The Washington Post

Weeknight Vegetarian Nov 7, 2016

Alton Brown's take on the signature sandwich at No. 7 Sub in New York City combines broccoli, doctored pickles, store-bought fried onions and salty cheese. And it works.

Lars Own, an imported brand of fried onions, can be found at some Whole Foods and other markets or online; you may also use classic French's Original Crispy Fried Onions.

Make Ahead: The pickles can marinate in the refrigerator for up to 5 days in advance.


When you scale a recipe, keep in mind that cooking times and temperatures, pan sizes and seasonings may be affected, so adjust accordingly. Also, amounts listed in the directions will not reflect the changes made to ingredient amounts.

Tested size: 4 servings

  • 1 cup bread-and-butter pickles, drained, plus 1/2 cup of their brine
  • 1 clove garlic, finely chopped
  • 1 tablespoon finely chopped peeled fresh ginger root
  • 2 tablespoons Asian chili sauce, such as Sriracha, sambal oelek or gochujang
  • 1 teaspoon toasted sesame oil
  • 1 medium head broccoli (about 1 1/4 pounds), chopped into florets, stalk thinly sliced into coins
  • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • Four 6-inch French bread rolls
  • 1/4 cup mayonnaise
  • 1/2 cup prepared fried onions (preferably Lars Own Crispy Onions; see headnote)
  • 2 ounces ricotta salata, shaved


Preheat the oven to 400 degrees.

Combine the pickles and brine, garlic, ginger, chili sauce and toasted sesame oil in a medium bowl. Marinate at room temperature while you make the sandwiches.

Toss together the broccoli, oil and salt on a large baking sheet; roast until the broccoli is bright green, is starting to brown on the edges and is easily pierced with a fork but not soft, 15 to 20 minutes. Let cool.

Position an oven rack 4 to 6 inches from the broiler element; preheat the broiler.

Split the rolls, leaving them hinged. Open them and set on a large baking sheet and lightly toast under the broiler, 1 to 2 minutes; watch closely to keep them from burning.

To assemble the sandwiches, lightly spread mayonnaise on the insides of the rolls. Divide the roasted broccoli evenly among them. Use a slotted spoon to lift the pickles out of their marinade and evenly distribute them on the broccoli, then layer the fried onions and ricotta salata on top.

Serve the pickle marinade with the sandwiches, for dipping.

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Recipe Source

Adapted from Alton Brown's "EveryDayCook" (Ballantine Books, 2016).

Tested by Joe Yonan.

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