Updated: Jun 29
In the South, strawberry season starts very early, and my children and I delight in going to a local farmer to pick his delicious strawberries. Eating unwashed strawberries from the field is one of my favorite spring things to do. Every time we go (see this video from our last trip), I ask the boys what they would enjoy making with their freshly picked strawberries. It was such a surprise during our last trip to hear them say, “Mom, we want to make sandwiches!” What? A sandwich? Not a popsicle, smoothie or ice cream but a SANDWICH! Did my ears hear you correctly?
This assertive sandwich is a tribute to a sweet memory I have regarding my first visit to Boston with my mother-in-law. After hours of walking through the city we stopped for lunch at a cute restaurant located in "Little Italy".
Here is the Foto I found from that trip. Sweet memories.
I remember reading the menu, which proved to be challenging for my then limited English vocabulary. However, this sandwich of which I am sharing with you today was pictured on the menu, so I selected it based on the photo. My mother-in-law said, "Inna you will like it because it has barely any sweetness!” She was correct, the flavors of the cheese, strawberries and nuts paired together so well and though there is some sweetness it didn't overpower the sandwich.
In this video we used TRIPLE-CRÉME Brie, and my son called it "stinky cheese," but I would go even further and choose something that truly deserves to be called "stinky cheese" which is either Époisses or Roquefort. These cheeses are creamy and pungent, but any stinky or slightly stinky cheese works fine.
WHAT MAKES THIS STRAWBERRY, NUTS, & STINKY CHEESE SANDWICH WORK?
In my opinion, it's the nuts, particularly pecans, but walnuts and almonds are also great additions. The nuts have a slightly sweet, salty and savory quality as well as a round sweetness that brightens the pungent cheese and along with the tangy spread creates a beautiful harmony of flavors. The local raw honey, being used in rather small amounts, acts as a glue rather than a sweetener.
This Strawberry, Nuts, and Stinky Cheese sandwich next to a green salad like arugula makes for a fun lunch. Also, this sandwich is an excellent appetizer; cut it into small triangles and it can be used as a party finger food.
This panini is a true crowd pleaser and even a 5-year-old can appreciate and love it, like my son for example!! LOL!
WHAT DO I NEED TO MAKE THIS STRAWBERRY, NUTS, & STINKY CHEESE PANINI?
Bread - rustic sourdough, ciabatta or even brioche for richer buttery flavor. Not everyone can bake bread, but I'm sure everyone can shop smart and find a quality loaf of bread at your local bakery. I used My favorite sourdough bread with flaxseeds and molasses.
Cheese - any kind that you consider stinky cheese will do here, as long it can melt and you like to use it. Époisses, Roquefort or Brie are fantastic cheese choices.
Strawberries - fresh of course!
Honey - just a small amount is needed and try to use local raw honey. It not only tastes better than the commercial honey offered by the big supermarkets (more than likely coming from China) but is also better for your health. In my kitchen, good quality honey is like having a pot of gold.
Butter - the last but not least ingredient, which plays a small but still an important role in this terrific panini. Always, always use real butter and stay away from all brands such as Land O' Lakes, Challenge Butter, etc.
SIMILAR RECIPES FOR SANDWICH LOVERS
Let's do it...
Prep time: 5 minutes
Cooking time: 6-8 minutes
Total time: 13 minutes
Autor: Inna of innichkachef.com
Yielded: one big sandwich with a side salad with serve 2 people
2 big slices of bread (see note above on bread)
1/2 cup sliced strawberries.
6 oz of Brie or other stinky cheese (see note above for my suggestions)
1 Tablespoon of butter, room temperature
Preheat a cast iron griddle.
Crush your nuts, there are many ways to do it, but the simplest is to place them into a zip lock bag and give them a good beating with a rolling pin or meat pounder.
Now, butter one side of the bread with a thin layer of butter.
Then flip the bread and build your sandwich. Start by spreading on the honey, sprinkle with nuts and nicely arrange your slices of strawberries.
Do the same thing with the other slice of bread but instead of strawberries use slices of cheese.
Combine the two slices together and cook on a hot griddle for about 2-3 minutes per side.
Carefully move the hot sandwich onto a wooden cutting board and cut the sandwich in half. Enjoy with a side of salad if you wish.
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