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Panini and sandwiches

Cheesy, easy breezy, veggie-loaded sandwich: Be careful with the goat cheese!

Goat cheese has to be one of the priciest ingredients ever – to me, anyway. I used to eat a lot of goat cheese when we lived in Europe, in countries where this type of cheese was produced in large quantities. Since coming to Chicago however, I had to scale down consumption for no other reason than price. I love a good goat cheese-inspired sandwich and miss the old days of indulgence!

With limited market supply and high prices as a result, what is a goat cheese aficionada left to do than to hunt down promotions and to hope for a sale? This is exactly what I have been doing for awhile now. Keep Reading

Memorial Day sausage sandwich extravaganza: a different kind of pigs in a blanket!

There’s no time like the time you spend with your loved ones ๐Ÿ™‚ This weekend my husband is off work, which means we will truly be celebrating Memorial Day together as a family. We went out to eat today, while tomorrow we’ll stay home and dear husband will do some grilling – and when we grill, we don’t hold back! We will for sure make the decadent sandwich below using fresh sausages we got on sale from the local grocery store. I will use a batch of Italian sausages for this purpose, but you can use brats as well (as we did in the past) with similarly spectacular results.

In creating this dish I was inspired by pigs in a blanket, the popular appetizer which involves hot dogs or small sausages wrapped in dough and baked until piping hot. Eating them straight out of the oven, sizzling with luscious juices and covered in buttery pastry, is definitely one of my greatest joys. This dish does resemble pigs in a blanket, but with a twist: the dough is replaced by lots and lots of bacon and pepper jack cheese. The more proteins, the merrier!

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Our Cinco de Mayo weekend: It’s time for a double-stacked corn tortilla sandwich – or two, or three!

Happy Cinco de Mayo, everyone! How many tacos do you usually eat in one sitting: two, three, more? I can only eat two, which is a shame because I just love corn tortillas. ๐Ÿ™‚ The rustic flavor and unadulterated simplicity of corn tortillas reminds me of the polenta I used to eat in my home country in industrial quantities. Both corn tortillas and polenta have recently become very fashionable, yet to me it is their purity of flavor that makes them the most appealing. Unencumbered by non-essential additions, corn tortillas exude honesty, an appreciation of the simple things in life, and a vast journey through history – and for these reasons I come back to them again, and again, and again.

I often use corn tortillas to make double-stacked sandwiches, which my husband loves to eat at the end of a long work day. The heat of the chorizo cuts through the layers of creamy chihuahua cheese to bring fire to the dish, while the tomatoes, sweet pepper and chopped cilantro add freshness and crispiness. Finger-licking at its finest, this sandwich is messy to eat, succulent and oh-so satisfying ๐Ÿ™‚ Keep Reading

What’s in a naan sandwich? A story of flavors, decadence and… trends

Did you know naan pizza is one of this year’s hottest food trends according to Pinterest? I’m not surprised: we have been using naan to make pizza quite a bit lately. We are big fans of classic thick pizza dough, but sometimes we want something different and light, and this is when naan flatbreads come in handy. With their wholesome flavor and smooth texture, naans have captured our hearts and minds, and they are here to stay. Overload them with veggies and homemade sauces and dips, use them as canvas for pizzas and sandwiches, and they are sure winners – in our household, at least ๐Ÿ™‚ Keep Reading

A touch of green, a lot of flavor: my St Patrick’s Day sandwich

Happy St Patrick’s Day, everyone! I hope your day is progressing nicely and you are surrounded by friends and family – and lots of green, of course! ๐Ÿ™‚

The sandwich below is an ode to great Irish culinary symbols, such as corned beef and Cashel blue cheese. I wanted to include such ingredients in the recipe below, while also allowing the sandwich to accurately reflect my family’s tastes and preferences. What has resulted is a creamy, dreamy, delicious bite: the crunchiness of the green apple plays nicely with the overall smoothness of the sour cream-based coleslaw, while the beefsteak tomato adds freshness and gains an assertive edge thanks to the blue cheese right on top of it.

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Manchego and jamรณn serrano panino: dreaming of summer in the middle of winter

Remember when life used to be simple and unadulterated? When there was plenty of time to breathe in and to enjoy its every moment? To me, pure, joyful life means one thing: summer. Still, my favorite season is far and away, and the ongoing cold weather has made me sluggish and has drained me of energy. What better way for a foodie to escape the cold than to enjoy a fiery Spain-inspired panino? Sandwiches and escapism – that’s the name of my game, as of late. ๐Ÿ™‚

Last week I went to the grocery store to tame my appetite for bright, summery dishes and came out with manchego cheese. Sometimes, weekly sales lead to the greatest discoveries!

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Two hummus sandwiches to remember: Eat, take a step back – and enjoy life!

“When are you going to make hummus?,” my husband asked me the other day. He had been pestering me with this question for awhile, and I had failed to give him an answer. After all, who has time to make hummus? With daily schedule so busy and spare time so limited, I have been meaning to go back into the kitchen, but life has got in the way. I want to take a deep breath and relax, sandwich and tea on hand, even for just 10 minutes. I want to think that life is not passing me by, to read a good book at a slow pace, and to reconnect with my very few friends. I want to cook and to enjoy life.

In busy times like these you’re grateful for any help you can get – be it a mom who’s willing to cook for you, a neighbor who shares some of their extra food, or simply a product you buy from the grocery store. To silence my husband who wanted hummus and was getting impatient lol, I went with option #3 and bought Hope hummus from my local Whole Foods. The team behind Hope Foods has recently contacted me to review their products, and their review proposal couldn’t have come at a better time. Keep Reading