When you think of building a sandwich with authentically Italian cotecchino sausage and Cacio de Roma cheese, does your mind automatically go towards topping it with Cambodian inspired chili mayo, ribbons of pickled carrots and cilantro? No? Well it should.
In a classic case of two great tastes that taste great together Mario Batali has collaborated with NYC sandwich masters Ratha Chaupoly and Ben Daitz of Num Pang to create a limited-edition signature sandwich which they have dubbed the Batali Pang: crispy slices of cotecchino sausage (made by Brooklyn Bangers) with balsamic pickled onions and Cacio de Roma cheese, placed into the traditional Num Pang backdrop of housemade chili mayo, pickled carrots, cucumber, cilantro and served on a toasted semolina flour baguette.
Cotecchino is traditionally eaten in Italy to celebrate the start of the New Year, so it was a natural choice for Batali to use to mark the beginning of Daitz and Chaupoly's Num Pang Guest Chefs Give Back program.
The program, which runs through 2012, has Num Pang teaming up with chef colleagues, friends and mentors to create signature, limited edition num pangs to raise money for charitable causes — the Batali Pang will be available through March 15th. $6 from each sale of the $9.75 sandwich will go to charity. For the Batali Pang half will go to Batali's charity, Food Bank For New York City, the city’s major hunger-relief organization working to end food poverty throughout the five boroughs, with the rest going to Chaupoly and Ben Daitz's cause, The Cambodian Children's Fund, which provides life-changing education, nourishment and healing to approximately 700 vulnerable children from some of Cambodia’s most destitute communities.
“I wanted to give back to a program that does for others what was done for me and my family, when we left Cambodia to come to the United States,” says Chaupoly. “I was given a chance because there were good people out there helping kids and families in need, and it means a lot to me to be able to give others the same opportunities.”
"I’ve been a huge fan of Num Pang —and Ratha and Ben— since they opened up their shop on 12th street,’ says Batali. “It feels really good to be involved in their efforts. Their energy and enthusiasm for supporting a cause close to my heart means a lot. And I’ve got a namesake pang now – how cool is that?!!"