One of my quick weeknight meal inspiration sites is Panini Happy, run by my friend Kathy. We met at BlogHer last summer and I have been impressed with her and her site from the beginning. Kathy is in love with her panini grill and it shows in her creative sandwiches. Even if your average weeknight is too busy for a fancy dinner, everyone has time for a healthy sandwich in the evenings, and Kathy's site provides plenty to choose from.
She inspired me to spiff up our weekly panini night, and I came up with this one after I found a tub of grated fontina in the back of refrigerator and couldn't remember why I bought it. Obviously I need to keep better track of my groceries. The slow-roasted tomatoes came from our summer garden, and we are looking forward to growing even more tomatoes this summer.
Prosciutto and fontina can be a little pricey, but you can easily substitute another thin-sliced ham and some good Swiss cheese. If you don't have slow-roasted tomatoes, purchased sun-dried tomatoes will work just fine. We really liked the sandwich and will make this again.
This is my contribution to Grow Your Own, a blogging event that celebrates the dishes we create from foods we've grown, raised, foraged, or hunted ourselves. I am hosting this round, so please send your post to me by February 28. If you are new to the event, you can read more about the rules for participating at the Grow Your Own page.
[Updated June 2014.]
Panini with Prosciutto, Fontina, Spinach and Slow-Roasted Tomatoes
- panini grill or a grill pan
- 2 slices whole grain gluten-free bread
- 2 slices prosciutto (or other thin sliced ham)
- 1 slice fontina cheese (or Swiss cheese)
- 2 tablespoons sauteed spinach
- 2 slow-roasted tomato halves (or sun-dried tomatoes)
- extra virgin olive oil
- Heat your panini grill or grill pan according to the manufacturer’s directions.
- Assemble the sandwich: 1 slice of bread, prosciutto, fontina, spinach, slow-roasted tomatoes, and the other slice of bread. Brush one side with olive oil.
- Place sandwich on the grill, oiled side down, and brush more olive oil on the top. Close the grill top and grill for 2 to 3 minutes, until the cheese sizzles. Remove and allow to cool for a minute or two before cutting. (If using a grill pan, grill the sandwich oiled side down and brush more olive oil on top. Grill for 2 to 3 minutes, then flip and grill another 2 to 3 minutes. You can also use press the sandwich with the bottom of a cast iron skillet or a sandwich/bacon press.)