This past weekend I was laying in my living room while Tyler watched The Food Network. This scenario happens often, and I’m usually immune to the tricks of The Food Network, but today…we were watching Giada De Laurentiis. I love Giada, I love italian food, and I suppose on this day I was extra hungry.
So on this episode Giada was making all kinds of meatballs and various dishes with meatballs in them. She made an Italian Meatball Panini and it looked so good that it is all that I thought of all day long. I went to work all afternoon and I got back home and said “yep, I’m gonna make that sandwich.” The sandwich has these delicious meatballs, pancietta, provolone, and grilled onions. It’s like….whoa good. I initially thought it would take too much effort to make, but once you have the meatballs made, it really doesn’t take all that much time at all. One thing you will need, in life and for this recipe in particular, is a panini press/counter top grill/George Foreman grill. I used a george foreman…cause it takes the fat right off!
LOOK AT THE DELICIOUSNESSSSS!!
Things you will need:
1 lb ground turkey
1 lb ground spicy italian sausage
1/2 C finely grated parmesan
1 C breadcrumbs
1 Small onion
1/4 C Milk
1 tsp Dried Basil (1/4 C if fresh)
1 tsp dried parsley (1/4 C if fresh)
1 Tablespoon tomato paste
2 cloves garlic
Salt & Pepper
1 Large red onion
4 Ciabatta rolls
Jarred tomato sauce (one that is good. Bad sauce creates a bad panini)
Red pepper flake
4-6 Thin slices prosciutto
8 slices Provolone
Now, first things first, make the meatballs. You literally throw all of the ingredients into a bowl, mix them together, and roll out the meatballs however large you would like them. Make sure to preheat your oven to 400 degrees. These will bake for about 25 minutes. If you happen to make smaller meatballs and have leftover meatballs that are uncooked, you can always freeze them and you’ll have them on hand! Not a requirement. Just a tidbit.
After the meatballs are cooked go ahead and grill up your red onion. Slice it however large you want, put it on the grills, drizzle with olive oil and salt and pepper, and let it sizzle for about 5 minutes per side. It will be so sweet and soft and delicious. You have no idea what you’re in for.
So now we’re ready for assembly!!! I know, you’re excited. Okay, so this sandwich needs to be assembled correctly or it will die before it even hits your mouth. Start with your halved ciabatta roll and dig out some of the bread in the center. This way your meatballs have a place to sit and chill. Comfortable meatballs are tasty meatballs. Okay, then put some of your sauce on the bottom of the roll. Top with Arugula(however much you’d like. I don’t like arugula all that much so I didn’t put too much on). Set the meatballs on top of the arugula. Top with more sauce and maybe make volcano noises while you do it, cause who says cooking isn’t fun? Sprinkle with red pepper flake if you so desire. Set your prociutto on top of all of that, then the provolone, then the top of the bun. Drizzle the top of the sandwich with olive oil and grill that mothereffer!
I had to show you one more time.
Wait about 5 minutes on the grill and then let cool…or don’t. I’m not your mother. If you want to burn your mouth then go right ahead. cut it diagonally and EEEEAAAATTTTTTT! You will love it. I actually have zero doubts that when you eat it you will love it.
I hope you make this and realize how simple it is and say to yourself “omg….Eric wasn’t lying at all when he said this was easy!” And while we’re talking about my hopes and dreams, I also hope you send me lots of money in the mail. I’ll take cash or checks.
Let me know what you think!