Archive | 8:36 am

My first panini press

28 Jul

Old age has not only brought me crows feet, forgetfulness and a few grays hairs. It’s also brought procrastination. My sister bought me this beautiful Hamilton Beach Panini Press for Christmas….ie. back in December of 2010.

Last week, I finally took it out of the box. I don’t know what took me so long-maybe it was because I knew I was going to move and didn’t want to clean the press then pack it up again or just intimidation. I took it out of the box and was entranced by it’s shininess. So silver, so clean, so unfamiliar.

And how small it was, do I even have to insert a twss? Yes, I will anyways—TWSS! I say go with the notion, go big or go home and from the size of the packaging, I thought the panini press would be bigger. And now all of a sudden I have Girls Talk by TLC in my head

I swear,you can’t take me or my ADD anywhere.

But back to the panini….I haven’t had a panini in awhile so I wasn’t sure what my first creation was going to be. Plus we didn’t have that much on hand at home so for my first panini I kept it simple-ham, muenster cheese, brown mustard and baby spinach. I made the sandwich then put on the griddle, closed the lid and let it do it’s magic for about four minutes.

Very tasty and definitely a fun way to change up mundane sandwiches. However, summer wasn’t the right time to try this out for the first time, I should have tried it in the fall or winter.

I decided to get a little more ambitious with my second panini, thanks to the help of TJ’s Red Pepper Spread.

I love this stuff so much and am now regretting the fact that I’m back in FL where the closest TJ’s is eight hours away-oi. Anyways, if you haven’t tried this stuff and are fortunate enough to have a TJ’s near you-please go out and buy it-you won’t regret it. I’ve used it on sandwiches and dips in the past and Caitie mentioned that she mixed it with sour cream and used as a pasta sauce so that is next on the agenda.

The other add-ins were thin slices of leftover bbq chicken, spinach, tomato and onion. I think the combination of overloading plus having a less hearty type of bread and the spread were my downfall because after a couple of minutes on the press the panini looked like this

I tried to fix it but there was no use in make it pretty. Sometimes you have to take things for what they are and look beyond the exterior. This was a Quasimodo of panini’s.

Bad looks aside, I still tore this thing apart. The red pepper spread was a great sauce to add and didn’t even need cheese (maybe that was another problem?)

Do you own a panini press? 

What’s your favorite panini combination?

Any panini press tips?

How many frickin times can I say panini?!!?