Friday, August 28, 2009

Pathetic Pesto Panini

First of all, let me offer an apology for my lack of posting. Life happened, as it so often does.
In the past week, I:
  • Took engagement portraits (which I will hopefully be able to post sometime next week!)
  • Covered night meetings
  • Read a really good book and as a consequence, did little else.
  • Just plain did not cook or clean or do anything domestic.

But I decided to jump back into cooking last night. We just got a George Foreman Grill, and I always liked making paninis on mine. Last night, I thought a chicken pesto panini would be good. Truthfully, I did not plan for this in any way. I also was not really thinking about the key to paninis: everything needs to be flat and squished. Anyways, you'll see what I mean.

We had chicken breasts ready to go and after a few minutes of deliberation over whether to trim the breast into smaller pieces, I decided maybe a whole chicken breast panini could work.

This. was. dumb. Why would a big piece of chicken be able to flatten to panini levels appropriately? I'm sure it's been done, but as you'll find out, it wasn't going to work in this case.

But foolishly, I marched on, and just pounded it a little to get it closer to flat.

While I marinated my chicken breast in pesto, I whipped together pesto and mayonnaise. This is easy and seems fancy. I recommend doing it for everything, if you don't already.

This doesn't look quite right, does it? Let's run down the problems, shall we?

1) The only bread I had were thick ciabatta rolls. And while ciabatta is great for paninis, it's usually better in slices. But Fresh Market was out of panini-perfect bread when I ran over there and in my laziness, I chose these instead. UNWISE DECISION, friends.

2) That chicken breast is pretty plump, huh? And also, doesn't come close to filling the roll. Hmm. That could be an issue.

3) Wow, I really can't slice tomato thinly, can I?

So I pop this behemoth onto the Foreman, and as you can guess (and see), it was five stories tall. And yet, bull-headed as I am, I still tried to close the Foreman over it. The combination of slippery mayonnaise, slick tomato, giant chicken, crazy huge bread was a disaster. I tried to close the lid and the sandwich came flying out at me, leaving tomato splatter on the counter.

I finally had to give up and grill the damn sandwich one side at a time, making it not a panini, but simply a heated sandwich.

Ridiculous. Have you ever seen something look less like its intended purpose? It tasted okay, but not panini-like. And it was a mess and a half. Oy.

So I guess we learned some lessons, huh, friends? Do not keep moving without the proper supplies. I should've learned that playing Oregon Trail.

SIDE NOTE: I'll now be tagging my cooking disaster entries as such. At some point, I'll go back and tag the archived disasters.


Sean said...

Mount Panini does indeed look ridiculously huge.

well done for making the most of it, though.

Sara said...

It looks tasty, though a panini it is not. They sell thinly sliced chicken breasts. Check that out for your next panini attempt.

Amanda said...

I'm a very firm believer in the "disaster" tag. You'll quickly realize that disasters are everywhere.