Grilled Eggplant Parmigiana Panini

by on November 9, 2010

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At one time, a few years ago, I had almost 15 magazine subscriptions coming to my mailbox – everything from Food & Wine to People to The Industry Standard (any former dot-commers remember that one?). Even though I’ve cut that number back to about 5 or 6, keeping up with popular culture through glossy magazine pages is still one of my favorite ways to relax and unwind.

Download Gourmet Live for free on iTunesI recently found myself captivated for the better part of an hour by Gourmet Live, the reincarnation of Gourmet magazine on the iPad. Browsing the pages is almost like a game – as I read through the various articles I was “rewarded” with the opportunity to unlock even more content, such as a collection of essays by legendary American food writer M.F.K. Fisher and a series of decadent chocolate recipes. It’s like a modern day Choose Your Own Adventure (once again, I date myself as a child of the ’80s).

In the course of my browsing and unlocking – they even give you an audible “Ding!” when you discover new content – I came across a recipe for Grilled Eggplant Parmigiana Hero sandwiches. That got me thinking…no, I actually haven’t made eggplant parm panini yet (I did do Chicken Parmesan Panini in my first year of the blog).

Eggplant Parmigiana Panini are super easy and relatively quick to make. You can even use your panini maker to grill the eggplant. Flavor-wise, they’re fantastic, just like eggplant parmigiana in sandwich form. I relegated the marinara toward the middle of the sandwich to keep the moisture out of the bread. Plus you get nice bursts of sauce in each bite. :-)

Panini-grilled eggplant

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>Ready to buy a panini press? Check out my Panini Press Buying Guide for the features to look for.

>Want more panini recipes? See my Recipe Index for a list of all recipes on Panini Happy.

>Traveling to a new city soon? Browse Panini Happy’s Great American Sandwich Guide to find the best sandwiches across the country!

{ 13 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Lauren November 10, 2010 at 6:36 am

I love that you even cooked the eggplant on the panini press! Looks delicious.

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2 Rich November 10, 2010 at 7:56 am

See, now that’s creativity, doing the eggplant first and then the sandwich. I’m typically a meat guy, but I’d totally dig into this.

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3 Kathy November 10, 2010 at 8:55 am

I’m with you, Rich – I usually prefer meat on my sandwiches but something about the flavor and texture of grilled eggplant just does it for me!

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4 Kristen November 10, 2010 at 8:35 am

I LOVE Gormet Live, don’t you? This panini looks amazing!
Kristen´s last blog post ..Quaker Chewy After School Rocks Giveaway

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5 Carole November 10, 2010 at 8:50 am

I’m moving an iPad from my “want” to “need” list. I miss Gourmet!

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6 Kathy November 10, 2010 at 8:54 am

You have to see how beautiful the photos appear on the screen!

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7 Nik November 10, 2010 at 10:33 am

Looks really delicious, beautiful and yummy

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8 The Food Hunter November 12, 2010 at 10:49 am

How did I miss this one on Gourmet Live. it looks wonderful.

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9 Kathy November 12, 2010 at 12:26 pm

It’s on one of the Italian-themed sections, one of the first ones.

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10 Audrey January 8, 2011 at 8:43 pm

That looks absolutely wonderful. I just found your page while I was searching out new panini recipes (I got my first panini press for Christmas after begging Santa for one ever since the day I got back from Rome). I love the idea of grilling the eggplant on the press and I thought about doing a similar recipe, but I never considered using Parmigiano-Reggiano in it. I grow eggplant in my urban container garden and end up with more than I know what to do with…thank you for solving that problem! I can’t wait until summer.

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11 Kathy January 8, 2011 at 8:47 pm

How fun to be able to grow your own eggplant. Congrats on the new grill, Audrey!

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12 Chris G February 12, 2011 at 10:32 am

Pressing and grilling the eggplant first sounds like it takes a lot of the work out of preparing eggplant – i.e. the salting, pressing, waiting to get the water out. I’d love to know if this really does make the eggplant dryer … will find out tonight when I try it. Thanks for the blog.

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13 Kathy February 12, 2011 at 10:38 am

Well, it’s really more grilling than pressing. I wouldn’t recommend applying too much pressure to the eggplant – just grill it like you might normally do on an outdoor grill (except it takes less time because the heat is coming from both sides). Good luck with it – hope you enjoy it!

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