grilled veggie panini*

check out my new "recipe index" above.

*because i don't actually own a panini maker.  i faked it.

on friday my mom took the kids and i to corner bakery cafe for lunch.  i ordered a grilled veggie panini on whole wheat bread.  so i decided to try and recreate it for dinner tonight.  the result;  a success. 

i didn't follow a recipe, i just threw together what i had in the fridge.  the zucchini and yellow squash i'd been needing to use for a couple of days now and i'm glad i did, they were ready to become trash and i hate throwing away produce!  the only thing i didn't have was tomatoes and i really wanted roasted tomatoes (so amazing!) so i picked some up at the store today along with some fresh berries and made some fake paninis.

grilled veggie panini
2 medium zucchini, halved length wise
2 small yellow squash, halved length wise
1/2 medium yellow onion, halved for rings
12 oz cherry tomatoes, halved (or sun dried tomatoes if you don't feel like roasting ahead of time)
5-6 cloves of garlic, un-peeled
3 tbsp olive oil, divided
salt and pepper
7 oz artichoke hearts (i used water packed but marinated would have been good too)
1 tbsp pesto
1/2 cup baby spinach leaves
2-4 slices low sodium provolone cheese
4 slices whole wheat bread (thick sliced sourdough bread would be delicious!)

1. roast tomatoes by preheating oven to 375 degrees.  place halved tomatoes on a lined baking sheet with garlic cloves.  drizzle evoo over tomatoes and garlic. sprinkle with sea salt and crushed pepper.  roast for 50-60 minutes.

2. turn grill to low heat.  baste zucchini, squash and onions with 1 tbsp of the olive oil.  sprinkle with salt and pepper.  grill until soft, 3-4 minutes per side (turning once).

3.  chop all ingredients and combine in bowl. (look at those tomatoes ~ YUM!)

4. preheat grill pan or panini press over medium heat.  

5. make sandwiches: start by brushing the first slice of bread (grill side) with olive oil.  spread pesto on the first slice (bottom piece) of bread.  lay spinach on pesto then add about 1/2 to 3/4 cup of veggie mixture on top of spinach.  lay slices of cheese on top of veggie mixture then top with the last slice of bread.  brush top piece of bread lightly with olive oil.

6. grill for 4-5 minutes per side with a fake panini maker like i did (yes, i actually smashed the sandwiches flat with a stock pot)

or, follow the directions for the panini press.  i wouldn't know what they are.  did i mention i don't have one?



Laura said...

Looks yum! Wonder if you could do the paninis and the grilling with a George Foreman grill? I see them all the time at the thrift store.

Mrs. JM said...

i really want a "griddler" by cuisinart. ... they're so cool. one day.

Anonymous said...

i request that next time we have lunch/dinner together this is what i get to eat. thank you in advance. :)

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