Tag Archives: Paninis

Mushroon and Spinach Tartines with Roasted Garlic Spread

I found this very simple but delicious recipe on VegetarianTimes.com and decided to try it for dinner tonight. I made a few modifications and it turned out great! I was amazed at how good the spread was (it’s made with tofu) – and it didn’t taste like tofu at all! This is a great recipe for a simple, weekend supper but it can also be used as an appetizer for parties. Hope you enjoy it!


  • 6 oz. soft tofu, drained
  • 6 cloves roasted garlic (if you LOVE garlic, I’d say you could use up to 8 or 9 cloves and it would still taste good)
  • 1 1/2 tsp. olive oil
  • 1 large portobello mushroom, sliced (I’m not a fan of portobello, so I used 10 oz of sliced crimini mushrooms instead)
  • 1 large shallot, sliced (1/4 cup) (I didn’t have shallots, so I used 1/2 a yellow onion, diced)
  • 1/2 bag (3 oz.) baby spinach (I LOVE spinach, so I actually used a 6 oz bag. The spinach shrinks so much in volume when it’s cooked, so that 6oz bag ends up being just about a cup of cooked spinach!)
  • 3 Tbs. grated Parmesan cheese, divided (I might have used a bit more cheese 🙂 )
  • 1 6-inch whole-wheat baguette, sliced lengthwise and toasted


1. Roast the garlic. This is very easy to do: simply trim the tops of whole garlic bulbs to expose the cloves, set on a piece of foil, and drizzle with olive oil (about 1 tsp). Wrap tightly in foil, and bake 30 to 35 minutes at 400°F, or until garlic bulbs are soft.

2. Place tofu and garlic in blender or food processor, season with salt and pepper, and blend until smooth.

3. Heat oil in skillet over medium heat. Sauté mushroom and onion 3 to 5 minutes, or until softened. Stir in spinach, and sauté 2 minutes, or until wilted. Add 1 Tbs. Parmesan cheese to pan, and remove from heat. I also added salt and pepper to taste for more flavor.

4. If you have any roasted garlic left over, spread one clove over each baguette half. Top with tofu-garlic spread, then with mushroom-spinach mixture, and sprinkle with remaining Parmesan cheese. Toast under broiler 1 to 2 minutes, or until cheese begins to brown. I also added a bit of salt and pepper on top (just a sprinkle) for extra flavor.

Note: I served it with tomato soup so that it made a more filling meal for dinner.

Nutritional Information

(Per serving = 1 baguette half)

Calories: ~300

Protein: 14g

Fat: 9g

Fiber: 12g (but it depends on the amount of fiber in your baguette)


Filed under Picky Cooks (Favorite Recipes)

One of my favorite recipes – Taleggio and Pear Paninis

One Saturday morning, I was watching the Food Network and one of my favorite chefs – Giada di Laurentiis. I’m thinking of making this recipe for dinner tonight – so thought I’d share it with all of you. You can find it on the Food Network Website but I have modified it slightly to make it healthier!



  • 1 (1-pound) loaf ciabatta bread (or 8 slices country bread)
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 8 ounces Taleggio cheese or brie, sliced
  • 2 large pears, apples or peaches, cored and cut into 1/4-inch wedges
  • 2 tablespoons honey
  • Pinch salt
  • Pinch freshly ground black pepper
  • 3 ounces arugula or spinach

My Modifications

  • 1 (1-pound) loaf ciabatta bread (or 8 slices country bread) – Instead of ciabatta, I use whole wheat baguettes or these whole wheat rolls from Safeway (decreases the calorie count and increases the fiber count!)
  • 1/4 cup olive oil – I definitely don’t use close to this much. I use about 2 tbsp max for all of the paninis, and I use a pastry brush to brush the olive oil on the bread (so I use the minimal amount while still getting the flavor!)
  • 8 ounces Taleggio cheese or brie, sliced – I couldn’t find Taleggio cheese at my local Trader Joes, but they did have great Brie and Fontina cheeses – either one works great! I don’t think I use 8 oz either, I use less – maybe half that? I don’t need that much cheese in my sandwiches so I just put enough to taste – err on the side of less rather than more as long as the sandwich is still cheesy!
  • 2 large pears, apples or peaches, cored and cut into 1/4-inch wedges – I like pears the best, and I use about 1/2 a pear per sandwich (at least!)
  • 2 tablespoons honey – I don’t use more than 2 tsp per sandwich
  • Pinch salt
  • Pinch freshly ground black pepper
  • 3 ounces arugula or spinach


Preheat the panini machine. (If you don’t have a panini machine you can also use a grill pan or a large skillet! Just use another pan to press down on the paninis to give that “grilled” feeling.) Cut the ciabatta loaf into 4 equal pieces. Halve each piece horizontally to make 4 sandwiches. Brush the bread on both sides with olive oil and place the bottom-half of the bread slices in the panini machine in a single layer. Heat until golden, about 3 to 4 minutes. Continue with the remaining top slices of bread.

While the top slices of the bread are in the Panini machine, begin forming the sandwiches. Divide the cheese among the warm bread. Cover the cheese with slices of fruit. Drizzle the fruit with honey. Sprinkle with salt and pepper. Top with a handful of arugula. Place the warmed top half of the bread over the arugula and return the competed sandwich to the panini machine for 1 to 2 minutes more to finish melting the cheese. Remove from the panini machine. Cut the sandwiches in half and serve immediately. Enjoy!

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Filed under Picky Cooks (Favorite Recipes)