Thursday, November 13, 2008

One Ingredient Panini Bread

My family loves hot sandwiches, and nothing makes or breaks a sandwich like the bread does. This recipe is similar in style to the One Ingredient Bread Bowls I shared with you not too long ago. And yes, it also only has one ingredient.

Preheat your oven to 375 degrees and assemble your necessities: refrigerated pizza crust dough (any brand), cooking spray and baking sheet.

Thin coat of cooking spray

Last time I felt silly admitting my irrational fear of popping open the can of refrigerated dough. It turns out my fears weren't completely unfounded. This is evidence of a can that literally exploded like a shotgun. I swear, it almost took my eye out.
Don't use a rolling pin, it just makes a mess. Use your hands to press the dough to the edges of the pan. Your dough should press out nicely. Mine had to be pieced back together and then pressed. I usually prefer a slightly thicker crust. Allow an inch all the way around the pan if you prefer the same. Just make sure it's pretty even in thickness everywhere.

10 minutes, or longer. Remove when lightly browned.

Let cool a couple of minutes, then carefully loosen bottom with a spatula.

Cut in 4 pieces. Yours will only have a big crack in the side if you had to poorly piece together the dough as I did.

Pair them together to make the bread for 2 large sandwiches.

Fill with the goodies and heat over a griddle or in a skillet to melt the cheeses inside and to give a nice brown toasting to the outside.

This recipe is the million dollar winner, Chicken Florentine Panini from

However, that recipe takes way too long to make. Here's my quick and easy version:

1 can refrigerated pizza crust (the brand that's on sale)
fresh spinach
1/4 c. mayonnaise
1 t. minced garlic, divided (I use pre-minced garlic, a total time saver! Ask for "garlic in water" in the produce department) Like to mince it yourself? Use 2 garlic cloves instead
1 Tbsp. olive oil
1 c. chopped red onion
1 Tbsp. red wine vinegar
1 Tbsp. sugar
3 boneless, skinless chicken breast halves (Could make do with 2, though)
dried Italian Seasoning
4 (4 inch) slices provolone cheese

Earlier in the day: Chop the red onion and refrigerate. Prepare the mayonnaise spread by adding 1/2 tsp. of garlic (1 clove) to 1/4 c. mayonnaise. Wash and pat dry the amount of spinach you think you will use for the sandwiches. Refrigerate. Prepare the flatbread as described above.

Start 20 minutes before dinner:
1) Heat oil in small saucepan over medium-high heat until hot. Add onion; cook and stir 2 to 3 minutes or until crisp-tender. Stir in sugar and vinegar. Reduce heat to low; simmer 3 to 5 minutes, stirring occassionally. Set aside (My kids call these candy onions).

2) Spray large skillet with nonstick cooking spray. Heat over medium-high heat (300 degrees on my flat skillet). Add chicken. Sprinkle with Italian seasoning and 1/2 tsp. garlic (1 clove). As it sits on the skillet cooking, butterfly the chicken breast. Cook 4 minutes each side (probably less) or until browned with juices running clear. While it's cooking, spread mayonnaise on one side of each of the flatbread. Remove chicken from skillet when done. Do not turn off heat.

3) Using a wad of dry paper towels, carefully wipe clear the hot skillet (I know, I know, it's hot). Place 2 of the pieces of your flatbread, mayonnaise side up, on the skillet. Cover with cheese, then chicken, followed by onion mixture and finally the spinach. Put the top slice of bread on and let it heat through until the cheese melts and the bottom browns. Flip, heat, cut and serve. Makes 4 decent sized sandwiches.