- 1/2 medium zucchini
- 1 red bell pepper, roasted
- 1 small jar marinated artichoke hearts
- 1/2 medium tomato, sliced
- 1 handful baby bella mushrooms
- 2 cloves garlic, roasted
- 1/8 cup balsamic vinegar
- 1/4 cup basil pesto
- 1 medium boule loaf
- few tablespoons vegan butter
- vegan mozzarella (optional)
the way i make this panini varies a little each time, and the basic recipe can easily be modified. a lot of the things can be store bought or made from scratch... that's up to you.
bread: if working from scratch, you'll need to make your boule loaf. i use the basic recipe from artisan bread in 5 minutes a day, with half whole wheat and half unbleached white flour. the recipe can be found here for those that don't have the book.
roasted red peppers: while the bread is cooling, slice the bell pepper into quarters and roast in the oven for 10-15 minutes. i usually throw a little olive oil on them, and place on a piece of foil at 400°f for 10 minutes, then turn the broiler on for 5 more minutes. they should be tender, but not completely black. again, you could also just buy a jar of these if pressed for time.
pesto: you might be able to find pre-made pesto, just be sure and check that it doesn't contain parmesean. to make 1/4 cup pesto, you'll need about 1 cup fresh basil leaves. in a food processor, add basil, 1 tablespoon olive oil, 1 tablespoon lemon juice and about 1/8 cup pine nuts. pulse until smooth and creamy, adding a splash more olive oil or lemon juice if needed.
ok, so now you are ready! use a mandolin or a steady hand to make several zucchini slices, approximately 1/8-1/4 inch thick. the slices should be fairly thin - bending if you hold them up by one end. place the slices on a plate with the balsamic vinegar and let marinate for 30+ minutes. when the zucchini are almost done marinating, slice the boule loaf horizantally into 4 thick slices. divide the rest of ingredients in half, and start building the sandwiches. spread the pesto on one slice of bread, and then layer the zucchini, red peppers, mushrooms, artichoke hearts and tomato. add the vegan mozzarella if desired. finally, on the other slice a bread, spread a garlic clove and press on top of your sandwich.
heat the panini maker, and spread a small amount of vegan butter on the outside of each bread slice. place the sandwiches in the press, and let them cook for approximately 10 minutes. over the course of the 10 minutes, press down on the sandwiches occasionally so they really smush together. like any good panini, they should come out crunchy brown on the outside with a warm gooey center, and should be pressed enough that they don't fall apart.
makes 2 large paninis.