Chicken Kabobs

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New Tricks for an Old Dog

Oh, the joys of going out to eat!  I enjoy eating out because it’s a chance to learn something new. Mom and pop joints are my favorite places to learn new techniques.  At Soup Spoon Café (located near the capital of Michigan), I got a bonus lesson on, none other than… the panini!!  This does not happen often- trust me!  In a prior post, I mentioned a panini place that had panini’s on french bread. However, it didn’t have the warm, grilled bread component that makes up a great panini.  Soup Spoon transformed their french bread to a “panini appropriate” sandwich.  How?? They flipped the bread inside out, genius.

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In this picture you can see how the inside of the french bread is now the outer layer, and what is usually considered the outer part of the bread- is now on the inside.

This sandwich consisted of slow roasted pork loin, caramelized onions, pickles and melted Gruyére cheese with their bistro sauce.

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Let me know if you try out this new trick!

 

Enjoy,

Sani

Classic Tuna Melt

What better way to enjoy the classic sandwiches than on a panini maker?  If you’re not a tuna person, I get it- I’ve seen the smell of tuna turn people away from trying it. However, I   know of a little trick that masks its’ strong flavor and encourage more people to try it!!  One of my favorite ways to eat tuna is with a little cajun mayo mixed in, on whole wheat toast, and with some Pepper Jack Cheese, and then obviously grilled in the panini maker.  Pepper Jack cheese is the greatest way to minimize the strong tuna taste and gives the sandwich some great flavor.

Ingredients:

2 slices of Whole Wheat bread

1 can of Tuna (packed in water is healthier than packed in oil)

1 slice of Pepper Jack cheese

Mayo (or Cajun Mayo)

Assembling:

1. Mix tuna and mayonnaise together with a fork to break down the big chunks of tuna (sometimes I add in a little crushed red pepper for some extra spice)

2. Add it on to one slice of bread

3. Top it with one slice of pepper jack cheese

4. Add the second piece of bread

5. Grill on panini for 3 minutes

Enjoy,

Sani

Grilled Pears

Grilled Pears with a Balsamic and Honey glaze topped with Goat Cheese.  They are phenomenal!!

Panini Wrap

Healthier than bread and a creative way to make ordinary wraps taste even better is a Panini Wrap!! I have featured recipes on my blog before on how to make a delicious panini wrap, but don’t often see them on menus. So, I was thrilled when I went to this great little deli in Charleston, South Carolina called Dellz Deli; which featured a whole menu of grilled wraps and pitas.

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This place has only about 6 barstools… .and that’s it. The line was huge wrapped around the corner and just by the looks of the people in line, it attracted everyone!

Inside was an interactive place where the owner and her son knew their customers by name!

They are known for their “goddess dressing”, which is their secret sauce that they give you to put on your sandwich.  And whatever it was, it was amazing!  Here is a picture of my grilled wrap with the goddess dressing on the side.

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Their menu consists of seasonal items and the freshest ingredients.  My wrap had brown rice and an assortment of different kinds of fresh veggies, and with the goddess sauce on the side it was delicious!!! 

 

For my recipe on how to make great wrap panini’s check out this post by clicking on this link    >>    http://sanipanini.com/2012/11/19/thats-a-wrap/

Vegan Panini

For all you Vegans and Vegetarians out there- I have a great panini for you! This recipe includes a major flavor booster: hummus!   My favorite type of hummus is one with extra lemon and lots of garlic.  Hummus is extremely easy to make.  It simply consists of using a food processor to blend garbanzo beans, lemon, tahini, garlic, salt, olive oil, an optional jalapeño, and paprika for looks!  If you are unfamiliar with the ingredient tahini, it is a grounded sesame seed paste that originated from the Middle East.  On the other hand, store-bought hummus is also a great option because of the various flavors!  You can leave it as is or make it your own by adding more lemon, crushed red pepper, etc.  Roasted garlic, jalapeño, and roasted red pepper are amongst my personal favorites.

Depending on your tastes and veggies you want to add into this panini, you can alter the type of hummus you use too!

Ingredients:

Your favorite vegan bread or lavash wrap

Any hummus you’d like

Lettuce (or Spinach or Arugula)

Cucumbers

Tomato

Red Pepper

Onion

Olive Oil

Salt and Pepper

Assembling:

1. Cut and clean your red pepper and onion into slices

2. Drizzle with olive oil, salt and pepper

3. Grill on the panini for 3-4 minutes or until the vegetables become tender

5. Cut tomatoes and cucumbers into slices

6. Wash and chop lettuce

4. Spread hummus on both slices of bread or lavash wrap

5. Add the grilled red pepper and onion to bread or lavash

6. Add cucumbers, tomatoes, and lettuce

7. Wrap your lavash or add your second piece of bread

8. Grill in the panini for 3 minutes

9. Cut in halves and then serve

The colors in this panini are fantastic!!

Enjoy,

Sani

TIP: Before adding the veggies inside the sandwich, grill them on the panini to enhance their flavor!