In my humble opinion, Sundays are the best day of the week. And I don’t like to waste a minute of it. My perfect Sunday starts with my favorite hike – a nice 5 mile loop near the former NIKE Missile Control Center – which earns me enough burned calories to splurge with a yummy breakfast sandwich, which is probably why my favorite meal is brunch. Whether it’s crispy buttered toast paired with a veggie scramble or a meaty, cheesy, breakfast sandwich with a dash of hot sauce, I am a happy gal. My signature breakfast sandwich includes a perfectly fried egg, just waiting for the yolk to crack. I mean what is more visually appealing than the ooey gooey yolk just waiting to be sopped up by the rest of your delicious sandwich.
2 Jalapeno chicken sausages
2 Half-baked Panini Rolls
1/4 cup Mozzarella cheese
2 teaspoon pesto
handful of arugula
Preheat oven to 425 degrees. Bake panini rolls for 6 minutes. While panini rolls are baking, slice each sausage into 3 pieces. Warm precooked sausage in the oven for 6 minutes.
Once the rolls have finished baking, slice in half. Coat each cut side with pesto, sprinkle top half of the roll with mozzarella cheese and return both halves to the oven to toast and melt the cheese, about 2 minutes.
While the cheese is melting and rolls are toasting, fry two eggs over medium heat. Once the eggs are finished cooking, assemble your sandwich-add sausage on top of the pesto coated toast, top with fried egg. Sprinkle arugula on top of the melted cheese toast and combine halves to create one delicious sandwich.
Serves 2 // 380 calories
Whenever given the choice of leftovers (no matter how delicious) and a sandwich for his work week lunch, Bill always opts for the sandwich. In an effort to add variety to an otherwise consistent lunch choice, I’ve been trying to mix it up with different protein options, coupled with the sandwiches toppings I always keep stocked. Since I was already making shredded chicken for my favorite pot pie recipe, I decided to set aside some extra and create an epic pesto chicken panini. Seriously, who doesn’t love melted cheese, hearty chicken seasoned with basil pesto all served on some whole grain bread? What are some of your go to sandwiches?
2 slices of whole wheat bread or roll
1/2 cup shredded chicken
2 Tbsp basil pesto, divided
1 slice pepper jack cheese
2 slices tomato
handful of arugula
Preheat panini press or warm a grill pan over medium high heat.
Toss shredded chicken with basil pesto and set aside. Dress once side of each slice of bread with remaining pesto. Layer pesto chicken on one side and pepper jack cheese on the other. Top chicken with tomato and arugula and top with the other half.
Place sandwich on panini press and close until bread is toasted and cheese is melted, about 2 minutes. Alternatively, place the sandwich on a grill pan, using a spatula add pressure. Flip after 90 seconds and repeat until cheese is melted and bread is a golden brown.
Cut in half and serve immediately.
Is it just me or are Friday nights the most difficult night to try to cook anything? I either get total recipe block and I can’t think of anything that sounds good or can’t find the right version of what I want to try. I literally found myself standing in front of the fridge for ten minutes looking and guessing what I could make for dinner without going to the store. I was about to break out a ramen when it hit me- CAPRESE GRILLED CHEESE! Yes, I got very excited for sure. Butter, cheese and a little something sweet- hello? get in my belly. Not only was my idea ingenious and delicious, but it’s super simple– almost everyone has the ingredients already in their kitchen. Next time you get recipe block, keep this on the back burner, you won’t be disappointed.
sourdough bread or rustic bread
fresh mozzarella, sliced
Pesto, homemade or store bought
Butter and olive oil for the pan
TJ Balsamic Glaze
Preheat oven to 375F. Layer 3 slices fresh mozzarella, sliced tomatoes and pesto between two slices of bread.
Heat 1 T butter and 1 T olive oil in a heavy bottom oven proof skillet. Lightly brown each side place in the hot oven. Bake until cheese is melty, about 15 minutes. Add spinach leaves, slice in half and serve with balsamic glaze.
Pasta salad is one of the easiest dishes to make, yet I always forget how much I enjoy it. Whether it’s a colorful summer pasta salad, seasoned with oil and vinegar, or a caprese pasta salad, made tasty with pesto, the prep is easy and the results are always impressive. The possibilities are endless and the flavors are limitless. As summer is creeping up on us, I love the abundance of asparagus in the market, especially when it’s on sale! I just couldn’t resist making a roasted asparagus and tomato pasta salad.
8 ounces pasta
1 pound asparagus, trimmed
2 tablespoons olive oil
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
1/2 cup basil pesto
1 cup grape tomatoes, halved
1/3 cup diced mozzarella cubes
Preheat oven to 450 degrees F. Line a baking sheet with foil.
In a large pot of boiling salted water, cook pasta according to package instructions; drain well.
Place asparagus and halved tomatoes in a single layer onto the prepared baking sheet. Drizzle with olive oil, salt and pepper, to taste; gently toss to combine. Place into oven and roast for 8-12 minutes. Let asparagus cool before cutting into 1-inch pieces.
In a large bowl, combine pasta, asparagus, pesto, tomatoes and mozzarella. Serve with fresh cracked pepper.
Is there a more fun way to spend date night then coming up with your own winning pizza combinations and baking them in our own oven? I don’t think so, but then again, I’m easily pleased. Ever since I discovered the premade pizza dough at Trader Joe’s, I’ve been hooked. It makes it so easy to make your own pizza. Not only can you make it healthy, but you know exactly what you’re putting on the pie, no mystery toppings here. We opted for a Pesto & Prosciutto Pizza because it was quick and easy and we didn’t need to spend too much time prepping the ingredients. We artfully decorate our pie, tossed it in the oven, started watching a movie and before we got to the good part, dinner was ready. Easy, peasy, date night idea. What are some of your favorite stay in date nights?
Premade Trader Joe’s Pizza Dough
Shredded mozzarella cheese
Prosciutto, thinly sliced
Follow the directions on the package of pizza dough. After rolling out dough, brush the crust with olive oil and liberally top with pesto. Sprinkle with mozzarella cheese and lay thin slices of prosciutto on the dough. Sprinkle with basil and bake for 15 minutes, until cheese is browned and crust is crispy.
Remove from the oven and top with fresh arugula.