Caprese Panini

Sandwiches are a great meal. I mean whoever came up with them is a genius – they are portable, can hold lots of ingredients, and are customizable. They are an easy lunch or dinner option that come together super quick and are always delicious. With all of the deliciousness to stuff them with, I would argue you could make a different sandwich every day for a year and still probably not repeat the same combinations. Anyways, to this gooey mess. It takes the classic Italian Caprese Salad, smashes it between bread for a portable option, and melts the cheese for a warm, gooeyness that melts in your mouth! The one key ingredient here is the balsamic glaze – I get this from Trader Joes because they have managed to nail this thick consistency while still maintaining that balsamic flavor. This sandwich is everything you need – cheesy, fresh, acidic, and salty. The basil pesto adds a nice salty punch while the balsamic balances it out with an acidic tanginess. I could eat this sandwich everyday for the rest of my life. It is seriously that good. Also I should note, you do not need a panini press to make this. You can recreate that press you get using a heavy pan. I recommend using a pot filled with water or a cast iron pan with a heavy book on top.

  • 4 Slices Sourdough Bread
  • 1/4 Cup Basil Pesto
  • 2 Tomatoes, Sliced
  • 1 Log Fresh Mozzarella Cheese, Sliced
  • Trader Joes Balsamic Glaze – this is a thick glaze that will hold up, regular balsamic vinegar is too runny. If you aren’t able to get to Trader Joes, you can make a version by reducing balsamic vinegar on low heat until the moisture evaporates and you are left with a thicker sauce.
  • Makes: 2 Sandwiches
  • Prep Time: 5 Minutes
  • Cook Time: 15 Minutes
  • Total Time: 20 Minutes

To Make:

  1. Spread 1/8 cup of the pesto on one side of the bread.
  2. Add 3-4 tomato slices on top of the mozzarella.
  3. Add enough slices of mozzarella to cover the bread so it will be very cheesy!
  4. On the other piece of bread, drizzle a generous portion of the balsamic glaze.
  5. Top with the balsamic piece of bread.
  6. Repeat steps 1-5 to make the 2nd sandwich.
  7. Place the sandwich in the panini press and cook for 8-10 minutes until the bread crisps up and the cheese is melted. If you do not have a panini press, that is okay! Heat a large pan over medium heat and melt 2 tbsp of butter. Add the sandwiches. Place a heavy object – such as a pot filled with water – on top of the sandwiches to help flatten them. Cook for 3-4 minutes, then flip to cook for another 3-4 minutes so both sides get crispy!
  8. Slice down the middle, serve and enjoy!

STEP 1

STEP 2

STEP 3

STEP 4

STEP 7

STEP 8

ENJOY!

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