Every now and then, I decide to go out and buy some slightly pricier but fresh and phenomenal ingredients. The way I see it, finals are over, and I now have all the time in the world to dedicate to some kickass cooking.
That’s why I chose to spend 45 minutes on a sandwich.
I know that sounds ridiculous, but trust me, it was well worth how long it took to prepare. (Granted, the majority of that time was devoted to caramelizing the onions and making pesto. Ooer.)
They might not be one of the prettiest things I’ve made, but they’re certainly one of the most delicious. If you’ve got some time and some awesome ingredients, please—devote them to this sandwich.
Ultimate Panini with Easy Walnut Pesto
1 large yellow onion
1/3 cup olive oil, plus 2 tbsp
1 cup packed fresh basil
1 clove garlic
¼ cup walnuts
¼ cup grated parmesan cheese
1 loaf rustic bread
2 tbsp butter
8 oz. thinly shaved deli ham
1 block of fresh mozzarella, sliced
Cut the onion into small rings and place with 1/3 cup of the olive oil in a pan on mid-low heat. Allow the onions to caramelize while preparing the rest of the ingredients. (It should take about a half hour.) Try not to let them brown.
Chop the basil at the same time as the garlic, continuing to do so until they are finely minced. Put the basil-garlic mixture in a bowl and cover with the remaining olive oil. Finely chop the walnuts, and add these as well as the parmesan to the bowl. Mix thoroughly and set aside.
Cut the bread into half inch thick slices, spreading the outsides with butter and the insides with the pesto. Layer the caramelized onions, ham and mozzarella and top with the other piece of bread.
To cook the sandwiches, bring a pan to low heat. Place the sandwich in the center of the pan and cover with a square of foil. Place another pan, underside down, on top of the foil. Put something heavy in this second pan to weigh it down so it presses on the panini. Flip the sandwich when you can hear the butter sizzling and the bread is golden.