Have you ever tried to imagine Paris Hilton eating a sandwich? Not in the crazy wet way, like she did in the commercial. Do you think she devours the helpless bread and meat because it’s “oh so delicious?” Would you see her pinkie finger raised ever so gently when she took a bite? She might even use her rhinestone-studded silverware and blot the crumbs with a bedazzled napkin. A likely scenario would be she just looks at it and takes a sip.
Paris Hilton aside, this sandwich is hot. Literally, because it is made in a panini grill pan. I wanted a lunch that was filling enough to get me though the rest of my busy day. But, I also wanted something that was warm, comforting and oozed when I bit into it. Then it hit me. I could use a few leftover golden pretzel rolls and make myself panini sandwich filled with smoked ham, pear slices, creamy brie cheese and Dijon mustard. The mild flavor of the brie is a great compliment to the sweet tang of the pears. Plus, the hearty bread was satisfying and kept me going the rest of the day. Paris would be proud.
Ham and Pear Panini Sandwiches
6 dense rolls like my Golden Pretzel Rolls or 12 slices of crusty French bread
6 thin slices of deli ham
6 slices of fresh pear, unpeeled
4 oz. brie cheese
2 Tbl. Dijon mustard
Preheat your panini press to medium high heat. Slice each roll crosswise in half and evenly spread the Dijon mustard on the cut side of both halves. Layer the bottom of each roll with a single slice of ham, pear and Brie cheese. Cap the sandwich with the top of the roll. Lightly coat the panini grill with cooking spray and press the sandwiches between the hot plates. Toast for 3 – 4 minutes or until the cheese has melted and the ham is warmed through. Eat on a pretty plate.
Author's Note: If you don’t have a panini press, these sandwiches can be baked in a 350-degree oven for 2 - 4 minutes or until the cheese has melted. You won’t get the crusty texture of a panini, but will still be a warm treat on a cold fall day.