Wednesday, March 7, 2012

Chicken Panini with Sundried Tomatoes and Spinach

There is something about a recipe with sun-dried tomatoes that sucks me in.   I don't care for fresh tomatoes in most things, but you throw in sun-dried (with the inherent oily and garlicy goodness) and I'm on board.    I think that my focus on planning and cooking more of my dinners instead of leaving things to chance has been helping with the 95 Days of Glory fitness and healthy eating campaign in preparation for vacation for Greece.   My pants are looser and I've lost over 10 pounds since the beginning of the year.  

This recipe is adapted from Cooking Light:  Rosemary Chicken Panini with Spinach and Sun-dried Tomatoes

What You Need
2 large skinless boneless chicken breasts
1/4 cup chopped oil packed sun dried tomato (keep the oil for sauteing the spinach)
1/8 teaspoon crushed red pepper
1 generous spoonful of jarred chopped garlic
6 oz fresh baby spinach
sea salt and black pepper
rosemary (I used dried, though original recipe called for fresh)
whole wheat hoagie buns (or the bread of your choice)
1/2 cup shredded mozzarella

What You Do
Marinate the chicken breasts with 1 tablespoon olive oil and rosemary (in a ziploc for 30 minutes if you plan ahead or just on a plate for a few minutes if you don't).  

Heat non-stick skillet and add sun-dried tomato (with oil), crushed red pepper and garlic and saute for a quick minute or two until it smells awesome.   Add the spinach and saute 1-2 minutes more until the spinach wilts.   Remove from heat.

I grilled the chicken on my little George Foreman grill.   The chicken breasts really were huge, so I was able to cut each one in half to make 4 sandwiches.   Sprinkle with a little salt and pepper before grilling. 

Once your chicken is grilled you can assemble your sandwich.   Sprinkle 1 tablespoon of cheese on the bottom of the roll, then add 1/4 of the spinach mixture, a piece of chicken and another 1 tablespoon of cheese and then put on the top of the roll.    Place sandwich back on your counter top grill, press cover down and cook for 2-3 minutes until cheese melts and sandwich is heated all the way through.   Slice in half.  Enjoy!

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