So, summer came around, and tomatoes finally ripened, and I finally busted out my panino grill. First up I made a panino with roasted veggies, pesto and tomato slices. They were delicious... and a few days later we wanted more.
Now that I was getting the hang of this panino grill, I just grilled up my tofu and veggies in the press itself. Quick, easy, and great results! I made a batch of the Italian Tofu from Vegan with a Vengeance, and also grilled up some sliced zukes and eggplants which I had included along with the tofu in the marinade.
The tofus and veggies joined up with some thick red tomato slices and fresh basil pesto, and then they all got smooshed together into a hot, crispy, Sandwich of Love.
Well, guess what? It turns out that I am deeply in love with my panino press. Now I use it for everything! Here you can see my defrosted loaf of Red Seitan from Viva Vegan, quickly grilled up for a tasty protein boost with my lunch. And really, now I use it for just about everything. Just today, I pulled frozen veggie burger out of the freezer, popped it in the panino press on "warm" for 10 minutes, then finished off with a couple minutes of "sear" for full effect, and I was good to go! Since it cooks from top and bottom, it's a great way to quickly grill stuff and get perfect results.
Then, Mr. Vegan Eats & Treats had a genius idea: Dessert Panini. So, out came the indulgences! After a particularly healthy dinner of only Giant Salad, we busted out some of the vegan "nutella" I'd picked up on our European travels earlier this year, a fresh banana, and got to work.
Ooooooh Lordy! These babies were gooooooood. I'm sure that will not be a surprise to you. One was made with my vegan chocolate-hazelnut spread & bananas, and the other was made with Chocolate Peanut Butter and bananas. Mmm. I can't wait to explore the world of desserty panini!
Now that my panino press and I have finally realized the depth of our soul connection, I don't think this friend will ever get dusty again - not even in the winter time. Forza Panini!
fun fact:Did you know that in Italian, a sandwich is called a "panino"? "Panini" actually means "sandwiches." But somehow, over here in America, a sandwich became "a panini." Incidentally, the same is also true for the word biscotti: one cookie is a "biscotto" and two or more cookies are "biscotti." Now you know, and now you can be a fancy word snob, like me.