Three Ways to Make a Panini Without a Panini-Maker

Three Ways to Make a Panini Without a Panini-Maker

Panini-makers are those griddle-type machines that people use to toast the bread and heat up the contents of the sandwich in order to get a grilled taste. Not everyone in the world has a Panini-maker, so what do you do as the alternative? I’m a sandwich lover who doesn’t want to invest into a west bend panini press. I love a good Panini sandwich. Give me roasted turkey, or Cajun turkey with lettuce, tomato, pickles, mustard, mayonnaise, onions (raw), placed on sourdough bread and that’s some good eating. Or I could also go the route of Italian bread with chicken breast, fresh basil, sun-dried tomatoes, and pesto if I’m feeling somewhat Italian. Basically have meat and condiments and I have some Panini options. No Panini-maker and I’m forced to do one of three things:

1. Pull out the barbecue grill.

Yes, this is when it calls for desperate measures. You can’t just put the bread in the toaster to toast it, no, you have to have the full-blown Panini with the grill marks and everything. There’s no other way to get the full-effect of a Panini unless you use a barbecue grill. I’m not sure how it’ll taste given it heats food differently than normal. You still would need to go through charcoals, lighter fluid, letting the fire die down and the charcoals ash over. If you really wanted to go this route, then what I might suggest would be to make a barbecue Panini sandwich using meat that you’ve already grilled. Perhaps do a hamburger Panini, or a turkey-burger Panini. It’s a little unconventional for me, but I could see it working for you.

2. Use the broiler.

The broiler allows the heat to come from the top down instead of from the bottom up. This is definitely a quicker option than the barbecue grill so you have to keep your eye on the food otherwise your sandwich will be toast… yes, the pun was intended. Be sure to flip the sides so that both sides get an even amount of toastiness. Place olive oil on your bread before broiling to give it that extra crunch that makes Panini sandwiches great.

3. Use a regular skillet.

Here’s a more conventional method for you… the regular skillet. Here are the ingredients you need: olive oil (I prefer extra virgin olive oil). Was that too simple for you? I try to make things as easy as I can. Place about 1/8 inch of olive oil in the pan which should be just enough to cover the pan. Heat up the olive oil until it gets hot, but not smoking hot. You can even add some seasonings to the olive oil if you like to give your bread some flavor. Place the Panini in the hot oil, let it “fry” for about two to three minutes, and then switch sides and do the same. Your Panini sandwich will be hot and toasted and ready to eat in less than ten minutes!


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