Nom Nom Nom! That’s one gorgeous panini!
Karen’s story is an inspirational one, and I urge you all to take a moment and read about it on her site.
“Karen came to a place of true acceptance of living with a chronic illness and traded the animosity for a life of meaning and purpose. She has chosen to overcome the obstacles in life, and through that, God has given her the passion to create recipes from scratch, and to live life to the fullest no matter how hard it is.”
Cooking shouldn’t be an obligation. It’s meant to be enjoyable and creative. It’s about putting your personal touch into everything you make. Cooking isn’t black-and-white, but it’s meant to be a mixture from the entire spectrum. With my recipes, I allow you to play with your food again! In this panini recipe, I offer a range of measurements so that you can be the chef of your meal and decide how little or much flavor you desire in this sandwich. Like all of my recipes in my cookbook Karen’s story, alternative ingredients are listed below for vegetarians, vegans, gluten-free dieters, those with peanut allergies, as well as eaters with other dietary needs. You’ll also find plenty of helpful and fun tips below to aid in both preparation and food storage and to help save money, among others.
This recipe came about when I didn’t know what to cook one night. We had not been to the store, and the cupboard was nearly bare. I’ve discovered that I write some of my best recipes when making something out of nothing. This off-the-cuff recipes has become one of our family favorites, and I hope it becomes one of yours too.
Provolone Pepperoni Pepper Panini
You will need:
- ¼ – ½ sliced onion
- ¼ – ½ sliced bell pepper
- 1-2 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil
- 8 slices pumpernickel bread
- ¼ -½ lb deli-sliced pepperoni
- 8-16 slices provolone cheese
- ½- 1 Pesto, store- bought or homemade (recipe below)
Homemade Pesto Ingredients
- 1 bunch fresh basil
- ½ bunch fresh parsley
- 2-3 cloves grated/chopped garlic
- ¼ – ½ cup peanuts/pine nuts
- 1 lemon
- ½ – ¾ cup grated parmesan cheese
- ¼ – ½ cup extra virgin olive oil
- In a food processor combine basil, parsley, garlic, pine nuts/peanuts, lemon zest with the juice from lemon and parmesan cheese.
- While processing, pour in extra virgin olive oil. Add amount of oil to reach desired thickness. Makes roughly ¾ cup.
- Turn on Panini/sandwich maker or place non-stick skillet over medium heat.
- In a separate skillet on stovetop over medium- high heat, sauté onion and pepper slices with olive oil until onion is translucent and/or vegetables are tender.
- Spread pesto on one side of each piece of pumpernickel bread.
- On top of pesto side, layer 4 slices of bread with a couple of pepperoni slices and 1-2 slices provolone cheese. Spoon on onions and bell peppers.
- Add another couple of slices of pepperoni on top of peppers and onions. Form a sandwich by placing a piece of bread on top, pesto side down.
- Place in Panini/sandwich maker or skillet. Cook until cheese is melted. If cooking in skillet, flip sandwich halfway through.
|Original Ingredient:||Replace With:|
|bell pepper||mild peppers (cubanelle, poblano, or Anaheim), medium heat to hot peppers (fresno, jalapeño, chipotle in adobo, serrano or habanero peppers), or any type of pepper|
|extra virgin olive oil||vegetable oil, butter/margarine, or dairy-free margarine|
|pumpernickel bread||brown rice bread, rice bread, or any type of sliced bread|
|deli-sliced pepperoni||thinly sliced soy-based pepperoni, pancetta, prosciutto, salami, ham, corn beef, pastrami, turkey or prepackaged pepperoni|
|provolone cheese||any type of sliced cheese or soy-based cheese|
|basil||tarragon or mint|
|parsley||chervil or cilantro|
|garlic cloves||¼ – ½ tsp garlic powder or ½ – 1tsp minced garlic|
|peanuts/pine nuts||sunflower seeds, almonds, chickpeas (drain and dry), or any type of nuts|
|parmesan cheese||soy-based cheese or any type of grated cheese|