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Panini and Pizza – Gourmet Ontario Promoting gourmet food, baking, organic, local food, VQA wine, craft beer, fresh farm, wild game, festivals Sun, 17 Mar 2013 23:57:18 +0000 en-US hourly 1 Corned Beef & Cheddar Panini Sun, 17 Mar 2013 23:54:54 +0000

We were trying to decide on what to make for lunch on St Patrick’s Day.  Being on a Sunday this year, and we usually make Panini’s for lunch, we decided to try an Irish inspired creation.  After a quick trip to the local deli, we picked up some shaved corned beef, a fresh loaf of whole wheat crusty bread and some aged cheddar.  The creation tasted great and was a hit with the kids.  Tell us what you think of this recipe, or what you changed with the recipe to make it your own.
Corned Beef and Cheddar Panini Recipe

Corned Beef & Cheddar Panini Recipe

Serves 4


  • 8 slices of fresh crusty bread (whole wheat or sour dough works well)
  • soft butter or margarine as spread
  • 200g – 250g  shaved corned beef
  • 1/2 – 3/4 lb old cheddar cheese shredded
  • shredded cooked cabbage (optional)


  1. Spread butter or margarine on one side of each slice of bread.
  2. Turn bread over so butter side down, then sprinkle a layer of cheese on bread.
  3. Pile shaved corned beef on bread, then sprinkle more cheese on top of beef, then cap with slice of bread butter side up.
  4. Place assembled sandwich in heated Panini pan and cook on medium high until cheese melted and bread is crusty.
  5. Slice in half, and serve hot.

Enjoy with your favourite stout or cream ale.

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Pulled Pork Tenderloin, Roasted Pepper & Jalapeno Havarti Panini Tue, 06 Nov 2012 14:03:55 +0000

The other night we enjoyed a wonderful dinner with our extended family.  The main dish was pork tenderloin in a brown sugar marinade, cooked in the slow cooker for 8 hours (recipe was adapted from here).  The meal was a hit!  The next day we were trying to decide what to make for dinner.  Wanting to do something with the delicious pork tenderloin, we decided to turn it into a Panini, using only ingredients on hand.  The result was an amazing, hearty and flavourful sandwich – perfect for a cool autumn night.

Pulled Pork Tenderloin, Roasted Pepper & Jalapeno Havarti Panini Recipe

Pulled Pork Tenderloin Panini with roasted pepper and havarti


  • 1 cup cooked pork tenderloin, shredded
  • 1 small orange pepper
  • 2 slices of Jalapeno Havarti cheese
  • 2 slices of roasted garlic bread, at least 1″ thick cut
  • soft butter (to spread)


  1. Pre-heat Panini pan (or grill press) to medium high.
  2. Spread butter on one side of each slice of bread.
  3. Slice orange pepper in half lengthwise and remove stem and seeds. Place pepper on grill and cook until soft and grill marks appear (3-5 minutes), remove from heat.
  4. If pork tenderloin is from refrigerated leftovers, reheat until warm.
  5. Start assembly of Panini with cheese slice on the non buttered side of the bread, then stack pulled pork tenderloin, followed by the grilled pepper, then the second slice of cheese, then the last piece of bread, butter side out.
  6. Transfer sandwich to pan, press lid down and heat for about 4-5 minutes until grill marks are brown and the cheese is melted.
  7. If you prefer beer, you can pair this with an IPA. If wine is more your style, a Pinot Noir will pair well with this sandwich.

For the kids, we omitted the grilled pepper and jalapeno cheese, using a sharp cheddar instead. They loved this Panini! We hope you find this recipe inspiring. Tell us how you enjoyed it or how you prepared it differently!

Pulled Pork Tenderloin Panini with Cheddar

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Peanut Butter & Jelly Panini Fri, 27 Apr 2012 16:52:09 +0000

Peanut Butter and Jelly PaniniWhether its kids, or the kid in us, who doesn’t love a classic PB&J sandwich? One day, my kids felt chilled at lunch time, and they asked me to warm up their peanut butter and jelly sandwich in the microwave. I reluctantly obliged, but to my surprise, it tasted pretty good warmed up. That’s when I got the idea of making a panini out of it – especially since my kids love anything that comes out of the panini pan.

On my first attempt at the PB&J panini, I used my home made peanut butter along with concord grape jelly. As a sweet and fun bread choice, I used thick sliced raisin bread. Pressing the panini for only a couple of minutes to make the bread golden brown resulted in a warm and tasty treat.

For those with peanut allergies (like one of the authors here at Gourmet Ontario), there is an excellent roasted soy-based alternative to peanut butter called WOW Butter. Its the only product we’ve tried that actually tastes like real peanut butter. It’s also safe to use in schools that have bans on nut products.

Peanut Butter and Jelly Panini Recipe


  • Peanut butter or WOW Butter
  • Concord Grape Jelly
  • Thick Sliced Raisin Bread
  • Margarine spread


  1. Prehead panini press, or the panini pan on medium high (gas 7).
  2. Cover once side of each slice of bread with marjarine.
  3. Cover the other side of each slice of bread with peanut butter.
  4. Spoon a heaping tablespoon of jelly on to one slice and spread around with knive to evenly coat.
  5. Cover jelly with other slice of bread so peanut butter is inside, margarine is outside.
  6. Heat in press for 1-2 minuites until outside is golden brown. Slice in half and enjoy!
  7. This panini pairs perfectly with a glass of cold milk.
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Meatball, Spinach & Red Onion Panini Fri, 20 Apr 2012 15:19:29 +0000

Meatball Panini Prep
When I need to make a quick, hearty lunch for the kids, or for a bite to eat in the afternoon when on a break from yardwork, I turn to the Meatball Panini. It’s definitely tasty, filling, and rather comforting. The recipe that I have uses lean turkey meatballs, but you can always use your favourite beef meatball recipe, or a soy-based vegetarian alternative if you desire. The sourdough bread provides an additional dimension to the panini, as the texture is soft, yet more dense than slices of Italian bread, and it has more flavour.

Meatball, Spinach and Red Onion Panini Recipe


  • Turkey meatballs
  • baby spinach
  • red onion diced
  • pasta sauce (with garlic)
  • part skim mozzerella cheese
  • sourdough bread
  • butter or margarine spread

Meatball Panini Assembly


  1. Preheat panini press, or panini pan & lid on stove at medium high (gas 7).
  2. Cook meatballs as directed, cut in half, set aside.
  3. Butter outsides of bread, turn over and spread pasta sauce on insides of bread. Sprinkle cheese then arrange half slices of meatballs on bread. Sprinke more cheese on top, then add red onion and spinach. Cover with other slice of bread.
  4. Cook for 2-3 minutes until cheese has melted and bread is golden.
  5. Cut and serve warm.

Meatball, Spinach & Red Onion Panini

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Home Made Pizza Pie Wed, 14 Mar 2012 19:59:17 +0000

Today is March 14th, also known as Pi Day but I like to think if it as Pie Day. While I won’t be making a pie for dessert for today, I am considering making a pizza for dinner. That is still a “pie” right?

I received a cookbook for Christmas on homemade pizzas titled “Pizza” by Pippa Cuthbert and Lindsay Cameron Wilson. The book has numerous fantastic recipe ideas and beautiful pizza photography. I’ve made many of the recipes in this book, and I have adapted two of my favourites below.

What is your favourite homemade pizza?

Crispy Pizza Base

Crispy Pizza Base


  • 4 tsp dried granular yeast
  • 10 fl oz lukewarm water
  • 1 lb 2 oz plain flour
  • 1 tsp salt


  1. Dissolve the yeast in small bowl and 3-1/2 ounces of the water, let sit for 5-10 minutes.
  2. Stir in 2 tbsp flour until smooth paste forms, then add in remaining water.
  3. Cover with a clean tea towel and let rest until it appears foamy and bubbluy, approximately 30 minutes.
  4. In large bowl, stir together flour (reserving 2 tbsp for kneading) and salt. Form well in center of flour mixture. Slowly pour  yeast mixture into well, stirring with a wooden spoon. Or use your hands, it is much easier.
  5. Gently knead the dough on well floured surface until the dough is combined and smooth. Pat it into a ball and place in bowl with tea towel over it to rest to double in size for approximately 1-1/2-2 hours.
  6. After dough has risen, punch down dough to remove excess air and equally divide the dough for your pizzas. I usually make two pizzas out of this recipe.
  7. Use a floured rolling pin to gently roll out your dough. Your knuckles work well to help form a crust.
  8. Add toppings of your choice, bake for 10-12 minutes in a 450 degree oven or until golden.

Caramelized Onion, prosciutto & peach pizza


  • Caramelized onions
  • Crispy pizza base
  • 8 pieces thinly sliced prosciutto, torn
  • 2 small peaches, each cut into 8 wedges
  • 2-3/4 oz chevre (goat cheese), crumbled
  • fresh ground black pepper


  1. In a small frying pan, melt butter then add sliced onion, salt and pepper to taste. I usually add a tbsp of apple or cranberry juice to sweeten the onions. Saute until onions are caramelized.
  2. Cover crispy pizza base with caramelized onions, making sure to leave 1/2-3/4 inch edge around pizza.
  3. Toss torn prosciutto on top of onions. (I used Spanish Serrano-style ham instead.)
  4. Place peach slices on top. I usually have more slices than I need, which means I get to eat any extras.
  5. Crumble cheese over the pizza and sprinkle black pepper to taste.
  6. Place in center of 425 degree preheated oven and bake for 10-12 minutes or until cheese melted and golden brown.

Wild mushroom, havarti & spinach pizza

Spinach & Mushroom Pizza


  • 1 12in Crispy pizza base
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 2 cloves garlic, finely chopped
  • 7 oz mixed wild mushrooms
  • 5 oz fresh spinach, trimmed and washed
  • 1/4 tsp sea salt
  • 1/4 tsp freshly ground black pepper
  • 2 tbsp Basil pesto
  • 4-5 sage leaves, finely chopped
  • 9 oz Havarti cheese, cut into 1/2 in cubes


  1. Preheat oven to 425F
  2. Pour olive oil in a frying pan, saute garlic and mushrooms for 2-3 minutes, until mushrooms are tender, stirring occasionally to keep garlic from burning. Toss spinach in pan, stirring until spinach is wilted. Season with sea salt and fresh ground black pepper after removing pan from heat.
  3. Using prepared crispy pizza base, spread a generous even layer of pesto over pizza dough, leaving 1/2-3/4 in crust uncovered. Add mushrooms and wilted spinach to pizza. Top with sage leaves, if desired, and cubes of Havarti. Bake in preheated oven for 12-15 minutes, or until cheese is melted and golden.


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