Another perfect day weather-wise; it’s always nice when that happens to fall on the weekend. We stopped at a local nursery to pick up a few things for the garden and then visited a flea market. I think Nicholas did the best out of all of us at the flea market, getting a Dora beach blanket, a Barney book and a Rugrats video. He was quite the happy camper.
Tonight for dinner, I concentrated on using the panini maker. Nice thing about using it is that it doesn’t heat up the kitchen the way the oven does, and as the weather gets warmer, I’m all for that!
Tyler Florence focused a recent episode of Food 911 on making paninis, and two of them that he made were Cobb Salad Paninis and Grilled Peanut Butter, Jelly and Banana Sandwiches. When I mentioned my plans for Cobb Salad Paninis to everyone, I was met with great skepticism. Salad in a panini? So just to be safe, I planned a backup with another new recipe with Giada DeLaurentiis’ Open Faced PLTs. Well, it seems I needn’t have worried with the Cobb Salad Paninis. They were delicious. Filled with vegetables and protein, it’s a healthy meal all by itself. I would definitely make them again. When Tyler made them, he mentioned that drizzling a bit of extra virgin olive oil on the top of the bread, before pressing them, gave them nice crispiness on the top, so I did it, and he was right. That Tyler is so smart…
I made the Grilled Peanut Butter, Jelly and Banana Sandwiches more for the kids, but I don’t think either of them even touched theirs, focusing on the bowl of fresh fruit instead. No matter, The Neighbor Wife and I love the sweet paninis, so they weren’t wasted. The Neighbors took take of making the Open Faced PLTs and I really liked them. Nice slight saltiness from the prosciutto and a peppery bite from the arugula … mmmm.
For cocktails tonight, I swiped some of the fresh watermelon and strawberries from Nicholas and made Watermelon and Rose Sangria (recipe to follow tomorrow). This recipe comes from a British cooking magazine, BBC Good Food, and it was light and refreshing. A nice switch from our usual Strawberry White Wine Sangria (aka Mom Juice), although that is still my favorite.
Alright folks, all for tonight. Just one last thing before I go. I happen to have an extra copy of Fresh magazine that is up for grabs. I’m going away next week on a trip I do annually. First US reader to correctly guess where I’m going gets the copy of the magazine. It’s an import and is always packed with delicious recipes and inspiration.
Onto the Weekend Dog Blogging roundup. Until tomorrow…
A year ago today… all about the magazines.
Cobb Salad Panini
1 head romaine lettuce
2 tomatoes, seeded
1/2 pound turkey breast
8 slices bacon, cooked
1/2 pound bleu cheese
4 hard cooked eggs, shelled and sliced
1 tablespoon chopped parsley leaves
1 lemon, juiced
3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, plus more for drizzling
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
4 ciabatta rolls or a baguette
Chop the lettuce, tomatoes, avocado, turkey, bacon, cheese, and eggs into 1/2-inch pieces and put them into a large bowl. Add the parsley, lemon juice, 3 tablespoons olive oil, and season with salt and pepper; mix well to coat all the ingredients.
Slice the rolls horizontally. Drizzle a small amount of olive oil on each of the cut sides. On the 4 bottoms place about 1/2 cup of the chopped salad and spread it out evenly. Put the tops on and gently press each sandwich to flatten it slightly; drizzle lightly with olive oil.
Place each sandwich on a preheated panini press and grill until the bread is toasted and the cheese begins to melt, about 5 minutes. Alternately, preheat a dry cast iron or non-stick pan. Place the sandwich in the pan and weight it down with another pan or a clean brick wrapped in foil. Grill 5 minutes, turn the sandwich over, re-weight it, and grill for another 5 minutes. Serve immediately.
Grilled Peanut Butter, Jelly & Banana Sandwiches
8 slices good quality white bread
2 tablespoons unsalted butter, room temperature
1 cup peanut butter, smooth or crunchy
1/2 cup grape jelly
2 ripe bananas, sliced
Butter the bread slices on 1 side with butter and place them butter side down. Spread 4 slices with peanut butter and top with the banana slices. Spread the remaining slices with jelly and put them, jelly side down, on top of the bananas. Press them gently to flatten them slightly.
Place each sandwich on a preheated panini press and grill until the bread is toasted, about 5 minutes. Alternately, preheat a dry cast iron or non stick pan. Place the sandwich in the pan and weight it down with another pan or a clean brick wrapped in foil. Grill 5 minutes, turn the sandwich over, re-weight it, and grill for another 5 minutes. Serve immediately.
Open Faced PLT
1/2 cup mayonnaise
1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
1 tablespoon lemon zest
6 slices whole-wheat or sourdough bread
6 ounces thinly sliced prosciutto
3 cups arugula
2 tomatoes, sliced
1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
Whisk the mayonnaise, lemon juice, and zest in a small bowl to blend. Set the mayonnaise mixture aside.
Toast the bread on a panini grill or griddle until golden brown. Spread the mayonnaise mixture over each slice of toast. Arrange the prosciutto over the toasts, dividing equally. Top with the arugula, then the tomatoes. Drizzle the oil over the sandwiches, then sprinkle with salt and pepper. Cut the sandwiches into 3 equal pieces and serve.
Sweet Bailey from The Savory Notebook pops in for a visit:
A cute neighbor pup from Ragus Pug:
It’s bath time for Ziggy at Soul Fusion Kitchen:
Up close and personal with the rock star among us, it’s Chloe from La Mia Cucina:
The cutie from Belly-Timber is minding the house while the folks are away. When the cat’s away …
Newcomer Firefly Fifty-Five introduces us to the adorable Cooper taking a swim:
Naptime is the right time at Dispensing Happiness:
It doesn’t get cuter than this duo from Farmgirl Fare:
And closing us out tonight, it’s Simba from Up a Creek Without a PatL: