A Sandwich Party for the Teachers + Giveaway!

A sandwich party for the teachers at our preschool

Those of us who love to cook know how it is. Nothing makes us happier than to pour our hearts into preparing a special meal and see delight on the faces of our guests as they enjoy it. I spent a good chunk of last week chopping, slow cooking, baking and caramelizing to pull off a lunch party for the staff of our preschool last Friday.

In conjunction with their National Sandwich Day Challenge, Arnold/Oroweat asked me to host a sandwich party featuring their Health-full bread (see the giveaway at the end of this post). I saw it as the perfect opportunity to show my appreciation for all of the teachers and aides at our school by treating them to a special lunch just before their weekly staff meeting. After much frantic scrambling that morning and some last minute packing help from my babysitter (thanks again, Jo!) I managed to get all of my trays and bowls transported to the school and set up under the big tree in the play yard.

I served three types of sandwiches:

Caramelized Onion, Fig Preserves and Goat Cheese Tartines

Caramelized onion, fig preserves and goat cheese tartines…

Steak, Roasted Bell Peppers and Goat Cheese Tartines

Steak, roasted bell peppers and goat cheese tartines…

Mini Black Forest Ham and Gruyere Panini with Butternut Squash Soup

…and Mini Black Forest Ham and Gruyère Panini over little bowls of warm butternut squash soup.

Tyler Florence's Fall Salad

My salad was Tyler Florence’s Fall Salad, with fresh pears, frisée and radicchio tossed in a maple balsamic vinaigrette with candied pecans and shaved parmigiano-reggiano on top.

The New York Times Chocolate Chip Cookies

For dessert, I baked the New York Times chocolate chip cookies, which is pretty much my prevailing favorite recipe at the moment. The teachers transferred this whole plate over to their dining table.

We have a few teachers who are gluten-free so I made them a special plate with the same sandwiches prepared on gluten-free bread. I also baked them a plate of gluten-free chocolate chip cookies (which are actually rather good!).

Happy Partygoers

The staff has let me know that they would be very willing to help me out the next time I’m looking to cook for a group. 🙂

* * * * *

Arnold/Oroweat would like to give 10 Panini Happy readers the opportunity to try their Health-full bread for free.

  • To enter, simply leave a comment on this post. [THE GIVEAWAY IS NOW CLOSED]

I’ll choose 10 winners at random to receive free coupons. The giveaway will close on Monday, October 24 at noon PDT and is open to those with U.S. addresses only.

**UPDATED 10/26/11 – Congratulations to the winners!

  • #17 – Kristi
  • #7 – Elisa B
  • #13 – Sami
  • #15 – Robbi H
  • #30 – Sharon Clifton
  • #4 – Robin Sue
  • #26 – Jacqui
  • #36 – Roxana Payton
  • # 3 – Nelly Rodriguez
  • #23 – Debbie

* * * * *

This post is one in a series sponsored by Arnold/Oroweat Bread, for which I have received compensation, but my opinions are always my own.


KathyPanini Happy, online since 2008, is more than just a sandwich blog. Here, you'll find hundreds of my original panini recipes, my guide to choosing a panini press and a whole lot of other creative uses for the panini press.
~ Kathy Strahs
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  1. Jen wrote:

    That was very sweet of you! I would love to try the bread too!

    Posted 10.19.11 Reply
  2. I am LOVD wrote:

    Looks so delish! I’m sure blessings are coming your way because what goes around, comes around!

    Posted 10.19.11 Reply
  3. Very fun party! I haven’t tried this bread, so hoping I get to soon!

    Posted 10.19.11 Reply
  4. Robin Sue wrote:

    Makes me want to be a teacher again. So much work went into this lunch Kathy- such a beautiful job, so colorful and creative!
    Very Im-PRESS-ive;-)

    Posted 10.19.11 Reply
  5. Fun! I love doing stuff for the teachers. What a delicious spread!

    Posted 10.19.11 Reply
  6. Colleen wrote:

    Looks insanely good! Extra props for the GF options too! 🙂

    Posted 10.19.11 Reply
    • Kathy wrote:

      Thanks! Made sure the broth in the butternut squash soup was GF too. 🙂

      Posted 10.19.11 Reply
  7. Elisa B wrote:

    What a wonderful event! It all looks delicious.

    Posted 10.19.11 Reply
  8. Kalyn wrote:

    We certainly didn’t get this type of food when I was teaching. I bet they just adore you!

    Posted 10.19.11 Reply
  9. kristin wrote:

    those sandwiches look yummy!

    Posted 10.19.11 Reply
  10. Lisa vuong wrote:

    What a wonderful celebration! Everything looks so delicious!

    Posted 10.19.11 Reply
  11. Dee Yo wrote:

    You had me at caramelized onions..and it just kept getting better! Great job!

    Posted 10.19.11 Reply
  12. Valerie wrote:

    It all looks delicious.

    Posted 10.19.11 Reply
  13. Sami wrote:

    Dang, now I am hungry and can’t leave the office!

    Posted 10.19.11 Reply
  14. Frances Harris wrote:

    I enjoy eating this healthful bread often, and I would appreciate a
    coupon for a free loaf very much.

    Posted 10.19.11 Reply
  15. Robbi H wrote:

    Everything looked fantastic!

    Posted 10.19.11 Reply
  16. Jessie C. wrote:

    Steak, roasted bell peppers and goat cheese tartines, oh my! I LOVE this one!

    Posted 10.19.11 Reply
  17. Kristi wrote:

    All of that food looks amazing! I think I just decided on a panini & butternut squash soup for dinner, thanks 🙂

    Posted 10.19.11 Reply
  18. Susan wrote:

    You must be the most popular Mom at the school! Everything looked-and I’m sure tasted- delicious.

    Posted 10.19.11 Reply
  19. Amy S wrote:

    Everything looked delicious! I love those chocolate chip cookies!

    Posted 10.19.11 Reply
  20. Erin R. wrote:

    Oh, my goodness. Those little ham and gruyere triangles look so lovely, and I’ll bet they were killer dipped in the soup. What a wonderful thing for you to do! So generous with your time and effort.

    Posted 10.19.11 Reply
  21. Beautiful spread! Lucky teachers.

    Posted 10.19.11 Reply
  22. Cellabella wrote:

    Those sandwiches look divine! And those cookies too – I’d love to transfer them to MY dining table, hehe 🙂

    And thanks for the giveaway, I’d like to enter! I’m a fan of Arnold’s bread and would love to opportunity to try more of their bread!

    Posted 10.19.11 Reply
  23. Debbie wrote:

    That’s quite the spread! What you said at the beginning (Those of us who love to cook know how it is. Nothing makes us happier than to pour our hearts into preparing a special meal and see delight on the faces of our guests as they enjoy it.) is something that my husband just doesn’t get. I love to make special treats for my daughter’s teachers and everyone else in our lives. I don’t think I could come close to what you did. But now I have some new ideas for the next teacher appreciation lunch. 🙂

    Posted 10.19.11 Reply
  24. Corisa wrote:

    I love to eat arnold bread at all times of the day ! Breakfast sandwiches , peanut butter and jelly sandwiches, tuna melts for lunch, and spread with nutella for dessert !

    Posted 10.19.11 Reply
  25. patti wrote:

    OMG! What a feast! I didn’t know food could be this mouth watering! Now that I found a perfect panini website, can I get the name of a good plastic surgeon?

    Posted 10.19.11 Reply
  26. Jacqui wrote:

    This also looks amazing – especially those chocolate chip cookies!! I have been dying to try out that NY Times recipe. Would love to try the Arnold bread!

    Posted 10.19.11 Reply
  27. Roberta wrote:

    Wow! How positively wonderful! Everything looks delicious!

    Posted 10.19.11 Reply
  28. Sarah wrote:

    What fun Kathy! My mouth is still watering when I think of our delicious lunch!

    Posted 10.19.11 Reply
  29. Mireille Le Marinel Lau wrote:

    Delicious lunch! The gluten free bread and cookies were a real treat. Thank you Kathy 🙂

    Posted 10.19.11 Reply
  30. sharon clifton wrote:

    That bread sounds wonderful!

    Posted 10.19.11 Reply
  31. Francie wrote:

    Oh Kathy! I am still smiling and thinking about the wonderful, yummy food that you so lovingly prepared for us! I have a cast iron panini press that (believe it or not!) was turned into the lost and found at the visitor’s center in Balboa Park where my daughter used to work. She gave it to me and now that I know about your blog, I know the correct way to cook with it and clean it! Thanks so much! XXXOOO

    Posted 10.19.11 Reply
  32. Eva wrote:

    Dear Kathy,

    That was an amazing treat! I LOVE sandwiches of all kinds anyway, but these ones were truly FANTASTIC! Thanks again, for doing this for us teachers, we so appreciated it!

    Love, Eva

    Posted 10.19.11 Reply
  33. michele wrote:

    Hi. I would love to try the bread!

    Posted 10.20.11 Reply
  34. Veronica wrote:

    Wow! what a spread and everything looks so yummy. I tried that Arnold Real Jewish Rye with Seeds when I made your Cheddar Bacon Panini with Caramelized-Apple Onion Chutney (with turkey bacon). My husband and son loved it. That is definitely a recipe I will make quite often.

    Posted 10.20.11 Reply
  35. chris wrote:

    Those looked awesome. I am so hungry now!!!!!

    Posted 10.20.11 Reply
  36. I love the Oroweat Italian, so the healthy Oroweat would be nice to try. As a former teacher, Appreciation Weeks were really nice.

    Posted 10.20.11 Reply
  37. jessica w. wrote:

    everything looks soo tasty! The last picture is awesome, it had me smiling!

    Posted 10.20.11 Reply
  38. Rachel Freeman wrote:

    Teachers earn every treat they get. Thank you for doing your part. I’d love to try the bread.

    Posted 10.21.11 Reply
  39. Wow, lucky teachers! That is some spread you made. Next time I am helping with the teachers lucheon I’ll have to get some ideas from you!

    Posted 10.21.11 Reply
  40. Jeanette wrote:

    Wow, I’m sure the teachers really appreciated all the work you put into this spread!

    Posted 10.21.11 Reply
  41. Karen wrote:

    We really like Arnold/Oroweat bread. It would be great to try their new product. And man, I wish I were one of your kids’ teachers! What a spread Kathy! Awesome!

    Posted 10.21.11 Reply
  42. Cheryl wrote:

    Love to win this!

    Posted 10.22.11 Reply
  43. Thanks for giving your readers this fun opportunity!

    Posted 10.23.11 Reply
  44. Lisa wrote:

    The Black Forest ham and Butternut squash soup look delicious.

    Posted 10.23.11 Reply
  45. erin wrote:

    very fun idea! gotta love our teachers!

    Posted 10.23.11 Reply
  46. Lauren wrote:

    You did a beautiful job! Everything looks amazing!

    Posted 10.25.11 Reply
  47. Alyssa wrote:

    These teacher are so lucky! The Black Forest Ham paninis with the little soups are so cute!

    Posted 10.26.11 Reply
  48. Kathryn O wrote:

    Oh my gosh! What an amazing, amazing spread. I think I would have a reallyyy hard time choosing a sandwich, they all look so good. Looks like it was all a big hit!

    Posted 10.27.11 Reply