Panini Appreciation Day


I love Paninis. I feel that any sandwich can be instantly made 10x better by throwing it in a panini press. While I currently do not own a press and toast my sandwiches in the toaster oven, it is #4 on my list of cool stuff I need to buy sometime. I am a HUGE fan of sandwiches in general for their versatility and flexibility, but a panini is one of my favorite versions. I figured I would share my 'recipe', if you will, for a groin-grabbingly good panini. To quote Moe Syzlak, "its like theres a party in my mouth and everyone is invited". Here is a guaranteed taste bud boner inducing panini:

This panini contains grilled chicken, fresh mozzarella, roasted peppers, lettuce and a delicious garlic-pesto spread. These are the moves you need to make to obtain a one-way ticket to tastetown

First you need to get some fresh Italian bread and slice it up good and thick like this:

Next you want to season up some chicken breast with salt, pepper, and garlic powder then grill that bitch up. Cook it about 4/5ths of the way through since it will continue cooking off the heat and also a bit in the panini press. After taking it off the grill, you should see this:

For the spread, you need to mix equal parts pesto (basil+olive oil+pine nuts) with mayonnaise. If you are watching your figure you can use light mayonnaise. If you arent watching your figure you can use 2x fat mayonnaise to suit your fancy. Top it off with some garlic powder and set aside until sandwich assembly time. If you made more than enough for one sandwich and stored it in a bowl, it would be similar to this:

Now its time to open the jar of roasted red peppers. A jar of roasted red peppers looks like this (personal results may vary):

Now any old idiot can get some iceberg lettuce and use it in a sandwich, but I feel its too generic to nestle in the middle of my divine creation. Arugula has a stronger flavor and also adds a nice color contrast to the roasted peppers. One time I spent my summer working on an arugula farm and this is what I saw every day:

Last, but certainly not least, is the fresh mozzarella. Slice it into rounds like so:

Now you have all your ingredients handy, its time to heat up your panini press. If it doesnt look like this you bought the wrong appliance. You probably bought a quiche maker. Fag. Panini press:

So put on your panini assembling gloves and lets get started:

Damn, those are some terrifying gloves.
Spread some of your pesto mayo on each piece of bread and dont be skimping on it. Next put your chicken breast down. Once the chicken is securely in place on the slice of bread, you can now lower a disk of mozzarella on top of it. Always look both ways before though. Safety is the key to delicious sandwich making. After the chicken and mozzarella have become friendly, you can give them an arugula blanket so they can get more intimate. Top off with the roasted peppers as some sort of food-sex-prophylactic euphemism. Lastly, butter the outside of each piece of bread so you will get some kick ass grill marks and also some good flavor. Toss that jaun on the panini maker and you are two to three mintues from a mouthgasm. If your imagination sucks and need some photo stimulation help, here you go:
Wow that looks terrific. Once your panini is done in the press you can commence consumption. Be careful, it might be hot. Also, dont get your hand stuck in the press by accident. Grill marks on sandwich = good. Grill marks on hand = you are an idiot. Here is a tantalizing close-up of how sexy your sandwich could look if you followed all my instructions. Model pictured here is my thesis sandwich when I was going for my masters in Panini making from Philadelphia Sandwich Technical Institute. Lets go Wildcats!

There you have it. A terrific, step-by-step guide on how to make a mouth-banger of a sandwich. If you are a hot chick and would like to make me a sandwich while I sit on your couch and drink beer please leave a comment.


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