Monday, November 22, 2010

Grilled Veggie Panini and a surprising discovery about my plant :-)

Some of you may remember this pretty dahlia  picture that I posted in summer, it was my very first dahlia bloom. I fully expected that with the arrival of fall, my dahlia plant would stop blooming completely. I was surprised to discover that not only does the plant continue to bloom, the blooms amazingly have changed color and are now a beautiful deep golden color. I am not quite sure what to make of it.....but I am enjoying the sight of these blooms every chance I get. If any of you experienced gardeners have an idea if dahlia commonly changes color in the cooler weather, do let me know .......

 Grilled Veggie Panini

Moving on to the grilled veggie panini, ever since we got this panini maker, I have been making and enjoying  many varieties of panini. This is the first time that I used the panini maker to grill vegetables and I was very nervous about it, but it worked out really well. The vegetables grilled evenly and  turned out flavorful.

Grilled Veggie Panini

In fact the veggies tasted so good straight out of the panini that I thought of tossing it together like a salad or side dish and eating it just as it is.....only this time I ended up using it entirely in the paninis. If you like veggie paninis, this simple, quick and flavorful panini may be something that you might be interested in....

Grilled Vegetable panini photo 952c1159-1696-4516-a682-d4d76e8baf8d_zps0f60659b.jpg

Click here for a printable view of this recipe.

Ingredients and Method to make Grilled Veggie Panini
1 zucchini
1 small yellow squash
1 Japanese eggplant (can be substituted with other types of eggplant
1 green bell pepper (capsicum/ koda molagai)
All vegetables except bell pepper cut into 3 parts, then sliced lengthwise.Bell pepper deseeded and cut into thin lengthwise strips.

4 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
1/2 tsp salt ( or according to taste)
3/4 tsp crushed red pepper (or according to taste)
1/4 tsp paprika (optional)
1/4 tsp dried basil.

Sliced Italian bread as required
Sun-dried tomato pesto as required. Updated to add: You can find my recipe for sun-dried tomato pesto here
a little extra virgin olive oil to apply on the bread

In a small bowl, mix together oil, salt, crushed red pepper, paprika if using and dried basil and mix well.

In a small bowl with a lid, add 1 tbsp of the above mixture, then slices of one vegetable, then toss it so that  each slice is evenly coated with this mixture.Remove and keep aside.

Proceed in this manner for all the vegetables. Grill the vegetables in batches in the panini maker or a grill if you have one. Make sure not to grill more than one type of vegetable at one time in the panini maker to ensure even grilling.

Apply sun dried tomato pesto on one side of two slices of bread. Layer one bread with a few slices of each type of vegetable, then place the other bread on top. Brush a little olive oil on the outer side of each bread slice and place in pre heated panini maker. Remove when golden and serve hot with choice of soup or salad.
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I was able to make approximately 4 paninis with this quantity of vegetables. The quantity of paninis will depend on how much vegetables you stuff into each one :) If you have leftover veggies you can serve/eat it like salad or a side dish, it tastes pretty delicious.

If you go not want to grill the vegetables, you can also bake it in the oven. Pre heat oven @ 400 deg F (approx 200 deg C) toss the vegetables in the oil flavor mix until evenly coated, line a large tray or two trays with parchment paper/ aluminum foil. Place the vegetables in it in a manner that it does not overlap. Place in oven and bake for 15 to 20 mins or until the vegetables are cooked yet firm. Remove and proceed with the rest of the recipe in the same manner.
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