Lately the weather's started getting cooler in the morning; I've been drinking homemade dark chocolate cappuccinos and wanting to wear sweaters. Is it turning into Fall anywhere outside Wyoming? I've forgotten how long Summer lasts in other parts of the country...
Thanks to the weather and changing season, you're going to start noticing more cozy foods coming out of the blog. I can't help it.
Today I thought I would share with you one of my favorite lunch foods. Sadly, I don't get to make it very often because Khale, my wonderful husband, generally dislikes hot sandwiches. He doesn't know what he's missing out on with this one.
Take a hunk of french bread, slice it in half. Drizzle one half with olive oil. Cut a garlic clove in half and rub the halves onto each piece of bread.
Then spread on pesto, top with tomato and top the tomato with fresh mozzarella.
You can cut your mozzarella slices pretty thin. It'll melt like crazy. Promise.
Add another layer of tomato.
Place the garlic-y piece of bread on top of the tomato-pesto side. Place on your panini grill.
You can brush olive oil on top of the panini (and add a sprinkle of garlic powder!) to make it crisp up a bit more...if you feel so inclined.
Gently push the top of your panini press down. Wait about 2-3 minutes and voila! You're panini is done!
But what if you don't have a panini press? Well, you could also make the sandwich in a hot skillet. Place a cast iron pan (or another skillet with a foil-wrapped brick inside) directly on top of your sandwich already in the heated skillet. The weight of either the cast iron pan or the brick-laden skillet will give you that pressed texture of paninis.
Italian Panini (printable recipe)
Serves 4...but easily halved or doubled!
Half a loaf of french bread
2 tomatoes, sliced
1/4 c. pesto
4 oz. fresh mozzarella, sliced
2 cloves garlic
garlic powder (optional)
Slice your french bread lengthwise. On one half, lightly drizzle olive oil. Slice each garlic clove in half and rub those halves onto the oiled pieced of bread.
Spread pesto onto the other half of the bread. Top with tomato and mozzarella slices. Place the other half of the bread on top. Brush the top piece lightly with olive oil. Sprinkle on a bit of garlic powder (optional...but soooo good!).
Place the sandwich on either a panini press or into a lightly greased skillet, setting another cast-iron skillet on top. Or use a skillet that has a foil-wrapped brick inside for weight. Toast the sandwich for 2-5 minutes or until the cheese has melted and the bread is golden brown.