As someone who has to avoid gluten, panini sandwich recipes are something I’d tried to forget about. It was depressing to think about these lovely little sandwiches when I knew I couldn’t eat them! This happens a lot when people have to change their diet – it’s really easy to fall into a trap of depression and self pity because you can’t eat what everyone else is having. While you might feel better physically, there is usually an emotional toll to be paid – at least for a while.
After some time passes and you learn how to eat differently, the world brightens a little bit. Your health starts to improve. You learn more about your diet. You figure out that there’s a whole world of food out there that won’t hurt your body. Maybe you never knew how to cook, and your diet change was the catalyst for learning. Or maybe you were already skilled in the kitchen, and you decide to completely reinvent your culinary self so that your tummy is always full of the best delectables imaginable.
Regardless of how it happens, most people who discover they have a dietary sensitivity eventually come around to enjoying their new way of life. A big part of this is finding stand ins for old favorites, whether they’re would-be analogues or something completely different that fills the role of “favorite comfort food” or “go-to dinner staple.” These days, we’re lucky to have an army of accomplished cooks and bakers who are busy creating recipes for those of us who have to avoid common, everyday household ingredients. These folks are improving our lives, one dish at a time.
Here is one such dish: last week I posted a recipe for Zoë & Jeff’s Gluten Free Brioche Recipe, which makes for a killer panini bread. Seriously. I no longer have to live without my paninis, and that’s HUGE for me! Can I tell you how satisfying it is to sink my teeth into a hot, melty sandwich? It’s one of those moments when you sit back and think to yourself, “Wow. You really don’t have to live without just because of a food allergy.” It’s especially gratifying when made on a panini press so that you can get those cute little grill marks.
I hope you enjoy this gluten free panini sandwich recipe as much as I did. Leave a note in the comments with your favorite panini recipe and we’ll start a running list of combinations to try!
Prosciutto, Havarti and Tomato Gluten Free Panini Sandwich Recipe
Makes two sandwiches
- 4 slices of gluten free brioche or other bread
- 1/4 pound of sliced prosciutto
- 2 slices of Havarti cheese
- 1 tomato, preferably heirloom, deseeded and cut into 1/4 inch slices
- Sea salt
- Freshly ground black pepper
- Olive oil
- Take two slices of bread and divide the prosciutto evenly between then. Spread the meat out so that it creates an even layer on the bread.
- Top the prosciutto on each slice of bread with two slices of tomato and then layer with a slice of cheese. Complete each sandwich with another slice of bread.
- Over a medium flame, heat a panini grill (to get the nice grill marks) or cast iron skillet (will work in a pinch).
- Gently brush the outside of each sandwich with olive oil. Make sure to get both sides!
- Once the panini grill is hot, place the sandwich between the grates and press down. Cook for two minutes, or until cheese is melted and the bread is nicely browned. If you are using a cast iron skillet, flip the sandwich over after two minutes and cook the other side for another two minutes. Make sure to monitor the bread to prevent burning.
- Enjoy hot!