Caramelized onions, figs and goat cheese panini…messy good! I thought I was using up the last of my fresh figs only to find more at Trader Joe’s today… guess I’m not done yet with my fig craze!
This quick panini was so tasty, both savory and sweet in each delicious bite. If you’re not wanting to have a full panini, i.e., two slices of bread for all of you carb watchers, I made this again the next day simply layering on one grilled slice of ciabatta, more like an open-faced sandwich or bruschetta. It made a great appetizer.
Ciabatta is a good choice but any rustic, hearty bread would be perfect. I prefer to slip in the arugula after the panini is grilled as I don’t like to have the arugula all wilty but more as a fresh crisp bite. For the open- faced version, the arugula was added as the last top layer along with a drizzle of balsamic vinegar.
Caramelized Onions, Figs and Goat Cheese Panini
1 medium onion, sliced thinly
1 cup sliced fresh figs, about 6-8 depending on size
1-2 tablespoons olive oil
2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
4 slices rustic bread, 1/2 inch thick
2-3 tablespoons goat cheese
Handlful of arugula
To caramelize the onions and figs: In a medium size skillet, heat the olive oil and gently cook the onions, kosher salt, pepper and oregano until soft and caramelizing. Stirring often, the caramelization should take about 15-20 minutes. When almost done, add in the figs and balsalmic vinegar. Stir gently to not completely break down the figs but allow the balsamic vinegar to bubble up and thicken slightly. Remove from heat and set aside.
To assemble the panini: Place one slice of bread on a grill pan. Smear on the goat cheese and then layer with the caramelized onions and figs. Place the second bread on top and grill until bread is toasted nicely. Remove and open quickly to slip in the arugula. Slice and serve. Makes two paninis.
I love being in the kitchen. Early mornings, soft music, a hot espresso. Easing into the preparation of delicious meals. Glancing through cookbooks, gathering inspiration and planning my day. I look forward to the cycles of the seasons, the pleasures of tasting and savoring and sharing this with those dear to me. Weekends are special to me as my week days are often rushed, but still I create the ambiance, light the candles, set the table and uncork the wine.