Sunday, 24 July 2011

Panini with Roasted Veggies and Lemon-Basil Pesto

Kitchen Play List: BBC Radio 2 Alan Carr Show

I have wanted to try this recipe since I bought Colleen Patrick-Goudreau's The Vegan Table 

I had two seconds to take this shot before they were eaten! lol.
And I have no reason as to why I haven't made them before but for dinner last night they seemed to be just the perfect meal. We spent the day adventuring at the most beautiful and peaceful Castle Howard in Yorkshire and had a lovely lunch there...I had a rather excellent Sweet Potato Risotto with Chilli and Ginger and it was topped by a few spiced parsnip crisps. We ended the day by calling in at the Yorkshire Lavender Farm and we enjoyed Lavender Scones with Lavender and Blueberry Compote. My friend J had recommended them when she heard we was calling in. Thank you J...because they were very tasty. I have a little bag of culinary lavender to experiment with now too! The lavender gardens and herbs gardens there are a sight to see and it was lovely see thousands of Bees busy doing there work! lol. 

So as we had eaten well during the day I knew we would only want a simple dinner so I roasted the red pepper, courgette and red onions a couple of days before and made the Lemon-Basil Pesto the same day. So all I had to do when we got home was make the salad and assemble the panini's and then put them on the press to cook. 

I made one change to the recipe...C.P-D suggests sliced avocado as one of the fillings and we did buy one but it was a solid as a brick so I subbed it for a smattering of grated cheeze. (Soy on mine and diary on the others) The salad I served it with was a simple mixed bag of leaves with sliced cucumber, radish, celery and cherry tomatoes. 

The results were a richly flavoured panini and so delicious...I will be making these again for sure! lol. And it hit the spot perfectly. My Love has already asked when we are having these again so I may try them out on my sister next Saturday! lol. 

A little effort in preparation but done over a couple of's no big deal. But a huge pay off in the end. I hope you try these....

Panini with Lemon-Basil Pesto  Makes 4 servings
(Recipe from The Vegan Table/Patrick-Goudreau)

For the pesto:
2 cups/80g loosely packed fresh basil leaves
2 whole garlic cloves, peeled (Don't worry they mellow really well!~R~) 
1/4 cup/35g pine nuts
Salt to taste
2 tbsp/30ml olive oil
2 tsp/10ml fresh lemon juice

For the panini:
2 medium-size roasted and peeled red peppers, cut lengthwise into strips
3 courgettes, sliced and roasted
2 medium red onions, sliced and griddled
2 medium tomatoes, sliced
1 ripe avocado, sliced or 4 tbsp of grated Soy Cheeze
8 large slices of italian bread or 4 individual panini's
2 tbsp/30ml balsamic vinegar
Salt and pepper to taste

To make the pesto place all the ingredients into a mini blender and blitz until smooth. If storing...container with airtight fitting lid in the fridge..will keep for two days. 

To make the panini lay out the slices/panini halves and spread the pesto on one side. Layer the roasted/griddled veggies on next and follow with the avocado/cheeze. Season with salt and pepper and then lay the tomato slices on top. On the 'lid' drizzle the balsamic vinegar but don't drench! lol. Then place the lids on top of the bottoms and press down gently. 

Place onto a heated Panini Press or a heated skillet. In a press leave to heat through...approx 4-5 minutes and if using a skillet press down with the back of a spatula and then carefully flip them over and cook for approx 2-3 minutes per side. 

Serve with salad and eat immediately.

Once again to C.P-D for a fantastic recipe...

Enjoy! We did...