Miss Ginger has never been a big fan of sandwiches. When Miss G was just a wee little boy, and Momma G was busy trying to keep up with the feeding and care of 5 hungry boys, there was only one answer to the question "what's for dinner": "Poke and grits! Poke your feet under the table, grit your teeth, and eat what I serve you!" Momma G was a great cook, so it was usually something good, but like most children, Miss G had a couple of food aversions: fish sticks, liver, and okra, to name a few. There actually was an option- Momma G ALWAYS had a loaf of white bread, a package of pink baloney meat, and individually wrap squares of orange cheese-like product in the house. If anyone didn't like what she made for dinner, they were welcome to make a baloney sandwich!
Then, there was fishing on the weekends with Poppa G. Poppa had the routine down to a science, with gassing the boat, loading the beer, and getting the stuff for lunch always the same. Lunch was a loaf of white bread, a pack of baloney, and a bottle of squeeze mustard. That was it. No pickles. No chips. Nothing else. Baloney on white bread. With mustard if you wanted it. And there was no way to cut the crusts off, either. "Tear 'em off and feed 'em to the sea gulls if you don't want to eat them!"
So when you say "sandwich" to Miss G, it conjures a vision of that loaf of Evangeline Maid Bread and that package of Oscar Mayer Baloney! Plus, living alone, she can never finish a loaf of bread by herself before it goes stale, and the baloney meat always becomes "questionable" before it's used up, so she typically doesn't buy either.
Q: When is a sandwich not a sandwich?
A: When it's grilled into a PANINI!!!
Now, Miss Ginger LOVES her a good panini, like the one shown here that she made herself for lunch today! Crisply toasted rye wrapped around melted Brie and prosciutto slices! Delish!
"But Miss G", you ask, "how did you get that crispy exterior and those beautiful brown lines on it?"
Well, dear 'Snaps, she used her newest kitchen toy, the Cusinart Griddler!!
She actually has the Griddler Jr, because it was on sale at her local Macy's and is plenty large enough for a single gal who eats like a bird! She couldn't find the small one online but they may have it in a store near you!
Now, I know many of you may have one of those stupid George Foreman Grills taking up space in your pantry, but throw that stupid thing out and get this- it's way better!
The two things Miss G likes about it most are the all metal construction and the free-floating upper plate, that lets you use even pressure to make a nice, flat panini instead of a wedge shaped one caused by a fixed hinge lid! The cooking plates lift off to go into the dishwasher if needed, but Miss G has found they can usually just be wiped off. There are no grease trapping seams or crevices like so many of these things seem to have!! As you can see by her panini above, it browns evenly and makes a nice, deep impression to multiply the crispiness beyond what you get on a flat surface!
Miss G will probably still use her outdoor grill for meats, but she is eager to try fish on this grill, where the heat will be easier to control and the flesh won't fall apart as she tries to flip it!
For quality and functionality, Miss g gives the Griddler Jr. 4 lipsticks! It's not something everyone "must have"- but if you love paninis as much as Miss G, this is the tool to use!