Friday, August 26, 2011
Pesto Turkey Panini
The PureBread Deli is a chain of sandwich shops located around northern Delaware. Last time I ate lunch there, I ordered a grilled panini called the Golden Retriever (all the sandwiches are named after dog breeds). I liked it so much I decided re-create a similar version at home.
The defining component of this sandwich is the pesto. With my garden currently overflowing with basil, I figured it was the perfect time to experiment. For my pesto, I used Pecorino-Romano cheese instead of the traditional Parmesan, and pecans in lieu of pine nuts. That's what I had in my pantry. This recipe is very versatile, and easily modified to fit whatever you have on hand. These sandwiches are a great choice for a light, quick dinner after a long, late summer's day. Plus, basil smells really good. I love taking any opportunity to work with it, because I love the aroma.
PESTO TURKEY PANINI
1 c. packed basil leaves
2 tbsp grated pecorino-romano cheese
3 tbsp whole pecans
3 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
salt and pepper to taste
6 slices whole wheat bread (I used Meyer's Italian)
2 roma tomatoes, sliced thinly
4 oz ball fresh mozzarella cheese, sliced
3 oz deli turkey
1. Using a food processor or blender, pulse the basil leaves until it's very finely chopped. Add in the cheese and pecans. Pulse for another 10 seconds. Blend in olive oil in a stream. Season pesto with salt and pepper.
2. Spread pesto on the slices of bread. Build your panini as follows: bread, fresh mozzarella, 2 tomato slices, turkey, bread.
3. Place in a panini press set to high heat (or use a grill pan over medium-high heat). Sandwich is done when cheese has melted.
Note: I was fairly generous with my ingredients, which resulted in only 3 sandwiches per recipe. However, slice a little thinner, spread a little less pesto, and this recipe can be stretched to 4, maybe even 5, servings.
Source: Cats and Casseroles original recipe, inspired by the Purebread Deli