Cheese-steak Panini Melt

I set a new record! I cooked more nights in one week last week than I have since Olivia was born…almost 13 months ago! I know, it’s sad and pathetic but when you have a hubby that usually isn’t home for dinner and you are starving and you just so happen to love a good peanut butter sandwich, well why would you cook? I don’t know if it was the abundance of good produce in our fridge and the desire to use up stuff in our big chest freezer before it becomes lost in the freezer burned depths thereof but somehow it happened. I had an idea in my head and figured it would be edible but I was SO happy when I took that first bite because it was SO delicious! Rob ate a version of it for dinner the next day and loved it and then we ate it again on Sunday, 3 days in a row, that’s when you know it is good. Because me and leftovers, I don’t usually mind them for a day but they just aren’t my favorite. PB&J is about the only thing I will eat for days on end, everything else, not so much.

Anyway, try this out. Super easy to get on the table in about 30 minutes. I even prepped the meat and veggies while Olivia was taking a nap so I just had to cook it, super fast!

First of all cut up onion, bell peppers (I used orange, red and green) and mushrooms. I did them in bite size chunks. I wanted them small enough that I could get all of them in a bite, I wanted all the flavors at once. Through it in a frying pan and cook to your liking. I like to cook them on medium high heat so they get some nice browning but stay a little tender crisp.

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I don’t have a picture but when you are cutting everything up slice up some steak or chicken in thin strips and then into bite sized pieces. I found two little steaks in the depths of our freezer so that is what I used. Have that cooking in another pan while the veggies are cooking. Once they are both cooked turn off the heat, combine them all in one pan, and mix them all together.

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Take two pieces of bread, put on some cheese (mozzarella was delicious!), a nice layer of the meat and veggies and you now just have to cook it!

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I cooked ours in our panini grill the first night, I love that grill and used it almost every day. You can get them pretty cheap and they are one of my top kitchen gadgets to have!

When Rob took his for dinner I was worried if I made a panini when I cooked mine that the meat and veggies would make it soggy by the next night when he ate it. So I sent him with all the components separate. He toasted the bread, heated up the veggies/meat in the microwave and then put it all together. He said it was a little messy but really tasty.

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The third time we went to have these I plugged in the panini grill while I put them together, opened the lid of the grill and it was COLD! The lights were on but apparently it died on me. I had that thing for 10+ years so I guess i can’t complain but we were hungry so I improvised. I put them in a frying pan on medium low heat so that they wouldn’t brown before the cheese melted and put a lid on it to help out with that. I had microwaved the meat/veggies so it wasn’t an issue of getting those heated through. Once the bottom side was browned I flipped them over and left the lid off. I got out a smaller frying pan and smashed them down a little bit so that the meat would stick to the cheese and not fall out when we tried to eat them. This way worked perfectly!

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Give it a try, it is a relatively healthy meal (depending on how much cheese you put on!). You get some good protein from the meat and lots of yummy veggies in there. Let me know if you try it out, this one will be on our dinner rotation for sure!

 

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