Panini AKA Smooshed Up Sandwich


Hey there! Get me a sammich! And don’t forget the beer! Well, maybe a glass of wine or some Baileys. But make it quick! I’m hungry! And thirsty!

Ahhh, shades of my past there lol. Except it was beer and I was on the receiving end of that 😛

Do you ever mentally look back at the younger version of yourself and think “OMG… what WAS I doing? What was I thinking when I did that…said that… LIVED that?” Yeah; me too. Some of the choices I made and those I let be made for me were pretty atrocious.

Many that I can’t regret however. Even with two failed marriages behind me (yes, two… I was young and naive both times though I get along with both exes now; time and maturity heals a lot of wounds plus life is too short for hating) I can’t regret them because of my children. Plus, as cliche as it sounds, you grow from the stupidity. My regrets stem more from choices I made that hurt others. You know what I mean? You don’t get to middle age without having done things that made life difficult for others.

What DO I regret however?

I regret not going to college.

I regret the times I missed with my kids when life was busy because they are the best kids on Earth.

I regret anger.

I regret the time I didn’t buy the strawberry cream filled Twinkies. (C’mon you expected ALL seriousness out of me?)

I regret letting myself be hurt by other, emotionally and physically.

I regret giving up my eleven mile a day walks

I regret times I have inadvertently hurt my husband because he is the best man on Earth.

I regret that I don’t have a better relationship with my stepchildren though I know that is more them than me.

I regret that third glass of wine each and every time I’ve done it 😀

Last (but certainly not least but I had to stop somewhere… ) I regret not having started this blog sooner because it has been a gateway to meeting so many wonderful people. Yeah, I’m lookin’ at YOU over there squinting at your computer screen. Put on your glasses for petes sake!

I don’t however regret inventanating (yes, that is now a word because I again said so. I like having the “Janet Vocabulary”) this panini (aka Smooshed Up Sandwich). It is quite tasty if I do say so myself.

When we grilled last night, I also made some boneless skinless chicken thighs (yes, you can sub chicken boobies in here. I used thighs to maintain moistness if reheated) to try to play with. Ok, that sounds wrong on more levels than I want to contemplate. I wanted to make them so that I had some meat to work with later.

Sigh. I give up.


This is pretty versatile. You could use chicken breast, a sliced up rotisserie chicken, different bread, what have you. The only components you would need to keep the same to have the same basic sandwich is the aioli and the specific cheese (though if you absolutely hate Brie just use another soft creamy cheese). But I’m going to post it the way I made it and the version that my husband gobbled up. Also, if you don’t have a panini press, you can make this in a non stick pan by pressing down hard on it with a heatproof plate using a pot holder. The effect isn’t quite the same but it works.

Grilled Chicken Panini

With Caramelized Onions & A

Sundried Tomato, Basil & Garlic Aioli

  • 2 small grilled boneless skinless chicken thighs
  • 1 sub roll (I used an Asiago cheese one)
  • 2 ounces sliced brie
  • 2 medium onions, thinly sliced (about 1 1/2 cups)
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar (optional)
  • 1/2 cup good quality mayo
  • 1/4 cup sun dried tomatoes
  • 1/4 cup fresh basil, chopped fine
  • 1 teaspoon minced garlic
  • 1 teaspoon lemon zest
  • 1 teaspoon lemon juice
  1. Make the aioli- mix the mayo with the sun dried tomatoes, basil, garlic, lemon zest and lemon juice. Refrigerate for about an hour so so to let the flavors blend.
  2. Make your caramelized onions- put your sliced onions in a pan with the olive; stir to coat. Over medium heat, cook the onions until soft and limp. Turn heat to low (about 3 to 4), add salt and slowly cook until golden brown, about 20 minutes. Stir in the balsamic vinegar if using. You’ll have extra onions; just put them in a covered container in the fridge and save for another time.
  3. Slather the inside of one half of the roll with the aioli. Layer on the chicken, caramelized onions and cheese. Put in a preheated panini press and press down hard. I had to hold one side in with the side of a butter knife to prevent it from sliding out at first because it’s a thick sandwich. Press down hard for about 2 minutes.
  4. Take out, slice in half, eat and drip juices everywhere. Write me a thank you note 😀




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25 thoughts on “Panini AKA Smooshed Up Sandwich

  1. Yummy, I love chicken smooshed up sandwiches! Don`t like aioli though as I don`t like mayo. But the rest sounds lovely.

    I appreciate your honesty on your blog. Regret is something we probably all ponder. Kudos to you for letting your true self show for us to see and appreciate. I am of the same mind, you have to fall on your face a few times to appreciate the times you don`t.

    When did they have strawberry twinkies, not sure I caught those here in Canada.*tear*

    • The Twinkies were out fairly recently. I kept thinking I would buy them next time… they they disappeared. *sobs with you*

  2. DELICIOUS! I love panini’s! For a long time I didn’t have a panini press (I do now). I just used my ol’ g.foreman grill with a brick on top. In fact, I blogged a sandwich you might enjoy ( Sorry for blatantly putting the page url out there – but I couldn’t think of any other way to share…and I think we have a LOT more in common than just our age! (although you’re WAY funnier!)

    • Ehhh, I doubt if it’s that I’m funnier (though hey, feel free to keep the compliments coming hehe) as it is that I am more certifiable 😀 Going to go look at that sandwich now 🙂

  3. I wish they still made the original Twinkies – it was banana cream in there. Yum!

    See, now you’re making me want to find my sandwich maker.

    • I remember reading about those those. When I get a craving for something like that, about the best store bought is Little Debbie Banana twins. I really need to try to come up with something home made

  4. Ahhh I miss my panini press…I still have it but it seems that everytime I start it up the whole wall and plug gets hot…perhaps i should start doing them on the grill…for everyones safety…hmm safety..or..sammich….

    • Hi Cassie! Glad you liked the post and hope you LOVE the sandwich 🙂 As for the third glass of wine, maybe if we move to a fourth the third will be forgotten 😀

  5. A smooshed sandwhich to you is a fancied grilled cheese to me. We were at Safeway recently and the guy asked for a “some kind of cheese” paninni. I turned to my daughter and said isn’t that basically a high priced ($6) grilled cheese sandwich with a fancy name?

    I am more of a smooshed sandwich kind of person than a (snooty) paninni kind of person. This looks fantastic!

    • I’m the same way Jo; thus why I called it a smooshed up sandwich in the first place :-P. I love the panini press because it makes them extra crispy but it’s still just a smooshed up sandwich 😀

  6. These paninis look so perfectly crispy, my mouth is watering! 🙂

    I very much enjoy the insights into personalities that blogs can offer when they are kept as candidly as yours – thank you, that must take a lot of guts. I hope you will feel better soon. Everybody has regrets, but what matters most is the now, and what we decide in this very moment. The future can be free of regrets at least for what we do currently 🙂

  7. I love that you just let loose on your blog Janet! We all need to do that every once in a while – and I’m glad you can keep us entertained and hungry =)

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