This soup is very light, therefore I thought it would be paired well with a Panini! The soup is inspired by Ina Garten
The biggest mistake people make when they want to eat a Panini is overloading it with cheese. I agree that cheese tastes great in a Panini, but be sure not to lose total control here. Try filling it up with some eggplant, roasted tomatoes and some of your other favorite vegetables too to make this sandwich exciting!
Start by placing your chicken cutlets in a pan and sauté for 8-10 minutes, until they cook on the outside. Then toss them on the George Foreman grill (for those who don’t have an outside grill for their apartment) and finish your chicken by grilling.
Sauté your peppers and onions
You can sauté your vegetables and cook your soup simultaneously to save time
As your vegetables and soup are cooking, prepare the bread for the Panini by slicing your baguette in half and then slice the width
Instead of mayo, I’m going to use the same horseradish that I used for my tuna sandwich, Woeben’s Sandwich Pal horseradish sauce
Cut your fontina cheese .. now remember not to go crazy here. What’s great about fontina cheese is that it is fairly pungent so you really don’t need a lot. It is somewhat of a nutty flavor with hints of different herbs
Add your turkey pepperoni and chicken. Now pepperoni can be high in fat, which is why I chose turkey pepperoni. It’s 70 percent less fat than the leading pepperoni and tastes the same! Some people aren’t crazy about this meat, so feel free to leave it out of the recipe if you’d like. It won’t affect the taste that much.
Slice up some tomatoes for your Panini…
And thinly sliced eggplant…
Return to your soup and place it in the food processor to puree
NOTE! If your food processor doesn’t block from liquid leaking through, you are going to have to drain the liquid in a bowl and add it back into your soup once pureed. See how I did below.
Next, place your Panini on the grill once you’ve added in your vegetables, cheese and condiments. NOTE! I added in leftover swiss chard from the meatball stew I made a few days earlier! You see.. .. never waste food
Once your Panini is warm, slightly flattened and the cheese is visibly melted, pour yourself a cup of your soup and enjoy with your homemade Panini! Who needs Au Bon Pain when you can make it yourself in your kitchen!