Feature Friday: Grilled Mushrooms Panini Video

Recognize this recipe? I gave you a little "behind the scenes" peek of it all the way back in January while we were on set filming. Finally I get to share the finished video with you today as our Feature Friday!

Grilled Mushroom, Cheese and Spinach Panini
Preparation Time: 10 mins. Cooking Time: 12 mins.

Panini literally means little breads, but in Italy it often refers to a sandwich. This delicious and nutritious panini is easy to prepare using several ingredients you may already have in your kitchen. Fresh mushrooms add a thick meaty texture to this vegetarian meal. You can use goat cheese and arugula for a different flavour profile. This recipe makes the perfect lunch or light dinner, it can be served with a side salad or soup for a complete meal.

Ingredients:
1 tbsp olive oil 15 mL
8 oz sliced fresh mushrooms 250 g
1 large clove garlic, crushed 1
1 tsp dried basil leaves 5 mL
1/2 cup chopped oil packed sun-dried tomatoes, drained 125 mL
2 cups grated old Cheddar cheese 500 mL
4 oval panini rolls (about 4"/10 cm), halved 4
1 cup baby spinach leaves 250 mL

Method
In a medium frying pan heat oil over medium-high heat; add mushrooms and cook, stirring occasionally, for 3 minutes or until just until starting to brown. Stir in garlic and basil; cook 1 minute. Remove from heat and set aside. In a small bowl mix cheese and tomatoes; spread evenly on bottom half of each roll. Arrange the mushrooms, and spinach leaves, evenly on top of cheese. Top with the other half of each roll and press firmly.Place in preheated sandwich grill* (according to manufacturers directions) cook about 8 minutes or until lightly browned and cheese has melted. Cut sandwiches in half to serve. Makes 4 servings.

*If sandwich grill is not available heat a well seasoned ridged grill pan OR a non-stick skillet over medium heat. Place sandwiches in pan and place another heat-proof pan or skillet on top of sandwiches; weight down with canned goods and cook 3-4 minutes or until lightly browned. Turn panini over and repeat for other side. Lower heat after sandwich is browned to melt cheese.

Tip: Substitute other crusty rolls or Kaiser buns for panini rolls OR substitute 8 slices (½”/1 cm thick) French, Italian or Sour dough bread.

Variation: Substitute ½ cup (125 mL) softened goat cheese (about 4 oz /120 g) for Cheddar and baby arugula leaves for spinach.

Nutritional Information: Calories: 484, Sodium: 733 mg, Protein: 22.1 g, Fat: 26.9 g, Carbohydrates: 39.6 g, Dietary Fibre: 3.4 g

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