Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Grilled Chicken Panini with Roasted Red Peppers, Pesto and Garlic Herb Cheese

At the beginning of the year, I started working with a personal trainer to help me work out and prepare me for a possible hip replacement.  Ellen is great.  She has taken me as I am -- which is less than anywhere -- and has slowly integrated exercise and movement back into my life.  Not of the "no pain, no gain" school, Ellen believes you should leave a session feeling healthy and good.  And she accomplishes that every week.

Since I go after work, seeing Ellen is a great way to shed the stresses of the day.  It's nice to follow someone's directions instead of giving them out, and the banter is light and airy.  I tell her that personal trainers must have to take an encouragement class and learn phrases like, "Wow, you are doing great!", "Boy, you are really strong!" and "You did that as fast as the guys!"

I know I'm a gimp, but Ellen's praise makes me puff up like a peacock.

After today's workout, I went to Trader Joe's to pick up something quick I could make for the family for dinner and walked out with chicken breast, bread, Rondole, pesto, and roasted red peppers.

Whereas working out takes motivation, perserverance, and commitment to reach goals, the payoff on these panini was immediate. And highly satisfying.

Note: You can easily switch out the chicken with fresh mozzarella for a vegetarian sandwich.

Grilled Chicken Panini with Roasted Red Peppers, Pesto and Garlic Herb Cheese

2 slices Tuscan or other bakery-style bread
Grilled chicken breast, sliced on the diagonal
Roasted red peppers from the jar (stored in water), cut into thin strips and patted dry with a paper towel
Pesto sauce (homemade, jarred, or store-made from the deli section)
Rondole Garlic herb cheese spread
Olivio Buttery Spray or butter

According to your own preferences, build your sandwich. One way to make this sandwich is to spread some pesto on one slice of bread and some garlic herb cheese on the other side. Add a layer of chicken and a layer of roasted red peppers on one slice and place the other slice on top to make a sandwich.

Generously spray both outside sides of the bread with Olivio Buttery Spray or butter both sides.

Preheat panini maker at the highest heat. Or heat a non-stick skillet over medium-high heat.

When the panini maker indicator says it’s ready, place the sandwich in the panini grill and grill until nicely browned. Alternately, place the sandwich in the heated skillet, grill on one side until it’s nicely browned and then turn over and grill the other side. Enjoy.


Anonymous said...

very popular to u! ........................................

Trissa said...

Hi Ninette- I always have believed that health is wealth! Congratulations on getting a personal trainer. I am sure that you will reap the rewards soon. And well done on that sandwich - it looks delicious!

Kevin said...

That is one nice looking sandwich!

oak dining room table said...

I like the addition of the herb cheese in there. It really looks so delicious.