Pressed Turkey Panini with Camembert and Apples by Erica

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Crispy-outside/tender-inside ciabatta rolls are spread with a lemon garlic aioli, then topped with fresh, vibrant spring mix, crunchy and pungent red onions, herb-rubbed turkey cutlets, slices of camembert, and finally, sweet apples. The sandwiches then get wrapped in tin-foil and pressed beneath foil-wrapped bricks that had been heating in the oven for almost an hour. The final product is a significantly flatter, crispy, crunchy sandwich just oozing with ooey, gooey, melty cheese, acting as the glue between the turkey, apples, and roughage. Biting into this sandwich is like getting a little taste of early fall, warm and comforting with the aromatic flavors of autumn produce and herbs.

4 thin turkey cutlets
1/2 tsp poultry seasoning
1/2 tsp salt
1/4 tsp black pepper
1 tbsp olive oil
1/4 mayonnaise
1 clove garlic, grated
1/4 tsp black pepper
zest of one lemon
2 fresh ciabatta rolls
1 cup spring mix salad greens or arugula
1/2 small red onion, sliced thin
1 small sweet apple, cut into 1/4 inch thick slices (we used a Macoun but any sweet or semi-sweet variety would do)

4 oz Ile de France Camembert, cut into 1/4 inch slices (trim the rind if you like)
Preheat your oven to 450 degrees. Wrap two bricks in foil and place in the center of the oven and allow to heat for 45 minutes to an hour.
For the turkey:

Sandwich the turkey cutlets between two sheets of plastic wrap and pound then gently with a meat mallet to flatten and tenderize them – you want them slightly less than 1/4 inch thick. If your cutlets are already very thin, you can skip this step.

Season the cutlets with the poultry seasoning, salt and pepper.
Heat the oil in a large skillet until a drop of water flung into the pan pops and sizzles. Carefully add the turkey and sear on each side for about 2-3 minutes until golden brown and cooked through. Remove from heat and set aside.

For the aioli:
Stir together the mayo, garlic, lemon zest and pepper.

To assemble the sandwiches:
Split the ciabatta rolls and pull out some of the bread from the center – this will make more room for the fillings and keep them from being squeezed out during the pressing step.

Slather the tops of the rolls with the aioli. Stack the fillings Ont he bottom half of the roll, starting with the salad greens, followed by the red onions, then the turkey cutlets, the cheese slices, and the apples. Divide your fillings evenly between the two sandwiches, and don’t try to use all of them if you don’t have room. Remember, less is more here.

Finish with the tops of the rolls and press down slightly with your hands. Wrap each sandwich tightly in tinfoil, and place on a baking sheet.

Using hot pads/oven mitts, carefully remove the now VERY hot bricks from the oven. Again carefully, place one brick on top of each sandwich, pressing down to be sure they will be stable. Place the entire baking sheet back in the oven to give the sandwiches a chance to heat through – 5 minutes or so should do it.

Remove from the oven and remove the bricks. Unwrap the sandwiches enough to expose the tops of the rolls, then replace the bricks or a few minutes to crisp up the crust. No need to put them back in the oven for this – the sandwiches will be plenty warm and the bricks will have retained enough heat to do the job.

Remove the bricks to a safe place to cool down, cut the sandwiches in half, and enjoy!

Votes: 151
Rating: 3.48/5
Total points: 525.48

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