Sunday, August 29, 2010

Roasted Vegetable Panini

So, the idea for this sandwich was definitely NOT my own original creation. The original concept comes from the Deli Bean Cafe in Reedsburg, Wisconsin, where I had lived for several years, and I kind of just took the idea and ran with it (since they wouldn't share their own recipe with me)! I often play around with some of the ingredients and have definitely found and mastered the technique which works the best.
First and foremost, let me just start by saying that if you initially roast more of the eggplant and zucchini, you can make sandwiches for the rest of the week without having to do all of the work all over again! Slice the eggplant and zucchini each ½-thick and spritz or brush with balsamic vinegar and olive oil; roast the slices in a 425 degree oven for 10 minutes per side. Also, if you make sandwiches in advance, they reheat best is you do so on a panini press or on your George Foreman. Like the ratatouille paninis, I also make these sandwiches on my George Foreman, which works the same as a panini press.
For the pesto mayonnaise, I use some of my fresh pesto or thaw some of the frozen cubes and then mix it with mayonnaise until it's combined well. You can adjust the pesto in the mayonnaise to suit your own personal tastes, but I like a good deal of pesto in mine!

2 slices potato bread
2 slices provolone cheese
Handful baby spinach leaves
2 medium/large thin slices tomato
4-6 slices each roasted eggplant and zucchini
1 Tbsp. pesto mayonnaise

Spread enough margarine on one side of each slice of bread to thinly coat. On the inside of one of the slices of bread, place one slice of the provolone cheese; on top of the cheese, layer the spinach leaves in an even layer and then the tomato slices. Place another slice of provolone cheese on top of the tomato slices, then layer with the slices of eggplant and zucchini. Spread the pesto mayo on the inside of the other slice of bread and place it on top of the vegetables to make a sandwich, with the buttered sides on the outside. Place the sandwich on a panini press, or a George Foreman grill, and toast until the outside of the bread is golden brown, the vegetables are heated through, and the cheese is melted. Makes 1 yummy sandwich

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