This 5-Ingredient Sandwich Is Stanley Tucci's "Desert Island" Meal

"So good!"

If you’ve ever watched one of Stanley Tucci’s cooking videos on social media, then you know his meals always look delicious. But one thing that consistently shocks me is just how simple his recipes are.

Typically they contain more elevated ingredients, like using pancetta in a pasta casserole or topping pasta with tomatoes and ricotta, but they’re always quite easy to make, which is why I love recreating them.

So, when I heard that Tucci’s “desert island” food, a.k.a. the one thing he could eat again and again while stranded on a desert island, was an elevated grilled cheese sandwich, I instantly knew it would become my lunch for the next month.

“I love sandwiches,” he said in an interview on the “Desert Island Dishes” podcast.

To be fair, we did know that Tucci loved sandwiches, we just thought it was the peanut butter sandwich he boasted about on his Instagram. But his desert island sandwich is “just a grilled cheese with prosciutto, maybe mozzarella, and then either just a couple leaves of basil or a little bit of pesto in there,” he said. “So good!”

While Tucci was explaining his sandwich, I was already thinking about when I could sneak away from the computer to make it—and, boy, am I glad I did.

How To Make Stanley Tucci's "Desert Island" Sandwich

<p>Bailey Fink</p>

Bailey Fink

Ok, it’s a grilled cheese. I’m sure you’ve made a few of those before, but here's how to make it Tucci-style.

I used artisanal sourdough bread—but you can opt for any sturdy bread you like—three pieces of prosciutto, a layer of shredded mozzarella then a layer of fresh mozzarella to really get that melty cheese, a thin layer of pesto, and a few basil leaves—because I love it and extra fresh basil never hurts, right?

Truthfully, prosciutto is never the meat I’m reaching for on a charcuterie board, so I was worried its salty flavor might take over the whole sandwich. But between the basil and mozzarella, I could barely tell there was meat on this grilled cheese at all—which might mean you should add a few more pieces if you’re a big prosciutto stan.

Next time, and there will be a next time, I’d add more pesto. The bread really soaked it up, so I think a thicker layer would really take this sandwich up a notch in flavor.

Overall, the sandwich lived up to the podcast’s hype and I will certainly be making it on my work-from-home days for the foreseeable future.

This just goes to show that Stanley Tucci would be someone I’d be ok being stranded on a desert island with—both for the conversation and the delicious sandwiches.