A Panini Maker? I Don’t Need No Stinking Panini Maker!

The Exile's Kitchen has no panini maker.
The Exile’s Kitchen has no panini maker.

I have been in exile for 10 months. The kitchen is tiny. There is no room for basic kitchen wares, much less specialty small appliances like a panini maker.

Earlier in the year, I saw a recipe for an apple, cheddar, and ham panini. Looking for something new to try, I thought I’d go home and give the recipe a chance. One problem; No panini maker. But wait! I did have a waffle iron. It’s a little messy, a little small, but gets the job done. When there’s no room to do, you learn to make do.

This type of sandwich has become one of my youngest son’s favorite quick suppers.

ABCC Panini (apple, bacon, chicken, cheese)

Makes 3 Paninis– or Waffle-inis:

6 slices( bread your choice)

3 chicken tenders pounded thin and grilled with your choice of seasoning

3 slices cooked bacon

1 apple cored and thinly sliced sideways, making pretty rounds

Sliced cheddar and mozzarella 

What to do:

Build your sandwich on an open and hot waffle iron that’s been coated with vegetable spray. Be careful. It’s hot. Don’t be an idiot.

I do bread, cheese, chicken, apple, bacon, cheese, and another slice of bread. Carefully close the waffle iron and press down on the handle till you see the cheese starting to melt. Be careful. Flip the sandwich, at this point. I used a pair of long handled tongs to do this step.

When everything is squished together and a melted conglomeration of flavors, remove to a plate and make another. I made three last night. I ate one and my son ate the other two.

Don’t need a panini maker. An old George Forman griil would work, too.


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