August is National Panini Month! What separates a panini from just a “normal” sandwich? The grilling! Grilling or toasting bread is the hallmark of panini! Perfect panini by brushing Villa Gabriella Organic, Extra Virgin Olive Oil on top & the flip side of bread for extra crunch! Use your favorite meats, cheeses, veggies & brush Villa Gabriella Organic Aged Balsamic Vinegar for added flavor. Healthy & delicious!
Makes 4 sandwiches
- ½ cup Villa Gabriella Organic Extra Virgin Olive Oil plus extra to flavor
- ¼ cup Villa Gabriella Aged Balsamic Vinegar di Modena
- 4 Italian ciabatta or country bread rolls split
- 8 slices of fresh Italian Mortadella or slices of your favorite capicola, ham, salami or turkey
- 8 slices of Smoked Provolone cheese or your favorite slices of American, Cheddar, Gruyere, Havarti, Monterey Jack or Swiss cheese
- Fresh ground pepper
- Brush grill or panini machine with 1 teaspoon of olive oil, heat to medium heat
- Brush olive oil along the inside center of each roll with ½ tablespoon olive oil
- Turn over & repeat the process on the other side of the bread with ½ tablespoon of oil
- Assemble sandwiches starting with meat, followed by the cheese, brush ingredients evenly with ½ tablespoon of vinegar
- Season with pepper.
- Cook 5 to 7 minutes.
- If using a frying pan, press sandwich down with a lid & cook sandwiches approx. 3-4 minutes on each side or until bread is fully toasted
- Serve & enjoy!
Useful Panini Tips
- Use 1 or 2 day old bread instead of fresh baked bread as it will hold up ingredients better & grills evenly
- Cut bread with a straight edged knife not a serrated one to ensure a smooth separation for cooked panini
- For a crustier, toasty panini without burning, cook on lower heat for longer time, instead of a higher heat
- Avoid mushy panini by adding the greens after grilling. Add Arugula, basil, cilantro, lettuce or spinach leaves, red onions or ripe tomatoes & insert right before serving for a soggy free sandwich.
- If using bulkier or “wet” fillings such as avocado chunks, roast beef or tuna fish place ingredients in the middle of the bread