This one goes out to the people who like good food but don’t have the time or desire to spend a lot of time hovered over a hot stove.
According to the Kitchen Boss, paninis are quite popular in parts of Italy. I like to imagine that it’s similar to the crepe carts in the touristy part of Paris: all over the place.
This sandwich is really flavorful and tastes like it would take forever to make. And, if you’re really hard core, you can make the basil pesto yourself.
Has anyone noticed how crazy-bright green freshly made pesto is?
(The color reminds me of this anti-nuclear waste coloring book my mom and step-dad gave me once. The family in the book moves next door to a nuclear power plant and slowly, creepily mutates and wastes away into nothing. Hmmm … hopefully I was older than I remember when I got this thing. But, I guess you’re never too young to learn about the horror that is nuclear waste. Am I right?)
But, once again, I digress.
Here’s a simpler version of this recipe from allrecipes.com, but, for the love of god, do not use ready-made chicken. I mean, we have to set the bar somewhere.
Try these cheesy, crispy paninis and tell me that you don’t love them. I dare you.
What you’ll need:
- 4 boneless chicken breasts or 4 think cutlets cut from one whole chicken breast
- olive oil
- 1 clove garlic, smashed
- 4 tablespoons basil pesto
- 4 tablespoons sundried tomato pesto (optional)
- 8 thin slices provolone cheese (or mozzarella)
- 8 slices from artisanal sourdough bread (though I like Publix’s deli “Italian” bread)
- Salt the chicken and rub with the smashed clove of garlic. Drizzle with a little olive oil and turn to coat. Let rest 15 minutes.
- Preheat a grill or cast iron pan medium-high. Grill the chicken cutlets until done. Let rest while preparing the sandwiches.
- Preheat a panini grill (or George Foreman grill). Spread 1 tablespoon basil pesto on four slices of bread. Top pesto with two slices provolone. Slice each chicken breast on the bias, and lay pieces from one breast each over the cheese. Optional: Spread one tablespoon sundried tomato pesto over the remaining four slices of bread and top the sandwiches, sundried side down. Brush tops of sandwiches with oil. Place on the panini pan, oiled side down, brush oil over the tops and grill until brown, crisp and the cheese is oozing.
[Source: TLC’s The Kitchen Boss.]