Sunday, April 17, 2011

#29 - Pesto Chicken Panino

You know about our KitchenAid, the pasta maker attachment, the ice cream maker attachment, the potato chip maker attachment, the hot chocolate machine, and the crock pot. Another piece of cookware that we love is our panino press. It takes grilled cheese sandwiches to the next level, and it helped us make these delicious panini.

Pesto Chicken Panino

A Hungry Hundred Original Recipe, Inspired by Harry's Tap Room
Harry's Tap Room is a great restaurant that has this crazy sandwich - it's a pesto chicken panino with mozzarella cheese. We decided to try something similar with our panino press, but we wanted to add arugula since we got some from our farmer yesterday morning.
You remember how to make the Villa pesto, right? Well, you can make some for this recipe and save the rest, or you can make some pasta and save a bit for this sandwich. But either way, you can store the extras in the freezer, and just heat it up before mixing it with the chicken.
So we just brush a little olive oil on the bread, layer it up, and then put the heavy press on top of the panini. It doesn't seem to matter how high the sandwiches pile up, once you add the big piece of metal, it transforms into a manageable size.
These panini came out really tasty. Dare we say, better than the original? The pesto went really well with the tomatoes and the arugula, and the ciabbata (which we may have cut a little bit thick) tasted great with the olive oil.
Wanna try your own? Do this.
  • 1 boneless chicken breast
  • 2 Tbs pesto sauce
  • 2 slices Ciabatta
  • 2 Tbs olive oil
  • 1/2 tomato, sliced
  • 1/4 cup arugula
  • 3 slices mozzarella cheese
  1. Grill the chicken breast and cut into small cubes.
  2. Toss the cubed chicken with the pesto to coat.
  3. Heat a panino press over medium heat.
  4. Brush one side of one slice of ciabbata with olive oil and place face down on the grill.
  5. Layer on top of the bread the pesto chicken, tomatoes, arugula, and mozzarella.
  6. Place the other slice of ciabbata on top of the sandwich and place press on top.
  7. When the bottom side is golden, brush the top piece with olive oil, and flip the panino.
  8. Replace the press on top, and cook until the second side is golden and the cheese has melted.

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