“How about Andouille and eggs?” my mother-in-law Susan suggested, without a moment’s hesitation.
After several days of mulling over Mardi Gras-themed panini ideas – and multiple trips to the grocery store for all kinds of ingredients – I struggled to come up with a concept that really spoke to me. I hadn’t considered going the breakfast route but it turned out to be just the right spin I was looking for. Thanks to Susan, we’ve got the Cajun Breakfast Panini – with Johnsonville Andouille Sausage, eggs, green bell peppers and cheddar on ciabatta – to enjoy for Mardi Gras or any morning that deserves a spicy start.
Breakfast sandwiches tend to have just a few ingredients, so you want them to be good ones. For my Cajun Breakfast Panini, it’s the spicy Andouille Sausage that really brings the flavor. Andouille, a New Orleans classic, may not be your typical “breakfast sausage” but perhaps it should be. Its smoky, spicy kick is a perfect match for eggs, potatoes and other breakfast-y type foods.
If you prefer less heat, you can always use another variety of the Johnsonville Split Rope Sausage. Johnsonville, whose Andouille Sausage I used for these panini, makes several other flavors, including Polish Kielbasa Sausage, Three-Cheese Italian Style Sausage, Smoked Sausage, Andouille Sausage and Chicken Sausage Italian Style with Cheese. I appreciate that the Johnsonville Sausages are made using only premium cuts of pork to pack in the real flavor and without any fillers – that’s not always the case with other fully cooked sausages – which makes for a juicy and firm texture and bite.
These Andouille Sausage links came fully cooked, so it took just a few minutes to heat them up on the panini press. I let the remaining oils from the sausage stay on the grates after I was done grilling so they could flavor the bread when it came time to grill my panini.
I love a good breakfast sandwich and these definitely hit the spot. They’re full of flavor, and despite the fact that you’re grilling sausages and cooking omelets, they actually don’t take all that long to prepare… which is a good thing, because you’re going to want to dig right in as soon as possible. 🙂
**WIN a $100 Visa Gift Card!**
Johnsonville and BlogHer would like to give one lucky Panini Happy reader a $100 Visa Gift Card.
To Enter: Leave a comment on this post, sharing which flavor of Johnsonville sausage you want to try.
See all the Sweepstakes Rules at the end of the post!
Cajun Breakfast Panini
By Kathy Strahs, PaniniHappy.com
Makes 6 panini
- 3 teaspoons unsalted butter
- 6 eggs
- Coarse salt
- Cajun seasoning*
- 1 (13.5 oz) package Johnsonville Andouille Sausage
- 12 slices ciabatta
- 12 ounces sharp cheddar cheese, sliced
- 1 green bell pepper, seeded and thinly sliced
- One at a time, prepare the omelets. Melt 1/2 teaspoon of the butter in a small nonstick skillet over medium-low heat. Beat 1 egg very well in a small bowl, season it with salt and Cajun seasoning, and pour it into the skillet. Once the egg has set slightly, pull in the sides with a rubber spatula to allow the runny egg to flow to the edges of the pan. When the eggs are nearly set, carefully lift up one edge with the rubber spatula and fold it in half. Transfer the omelet to a plate and tent it with foil to keep it warm while you prepare the other five omelets in the same manner.
- Heat the panini press to medium-high heat. If your panini press comes with a tilt feature and a removable drip pan, be sure to set it to tilt and put the drip pan in place.
- Slice each Andouille Sausage link in half lengthwise without slicing all the way through, then fold open the sausage. Place the sausages, cut sides down, on the grill. Close the lid and grill the sausages until they are heated through and grill marks appear, 4 to 5 minutes. Keep the panini press on, with the oil from the sausages remaining on the plates.
- Divide the sausages into 6 portions (i.e., cut each butterflied link into thirds)
- For each sandwich: Lay cheese on one slice of bread. Top it with sausage, green bell pepper slices and more cheese. Close the sandwich with a second slice of bread.
- Grill two panini at a time, with the lid closed, until the cheese is melted and the bread is toasted, 4 to 5 minutes.
* If you don’t have Cajun seasoning on hand, you can substitute dashes of black pepper, oregano, paprika and cayenne.
No duplicate comments.
You may receive (2) total entries by selecting from the following entry methods:
1. Leave a comment in response to the sweepstakes prompt on this post
2. Tweet (public message) about this promotion; including exactly the following unique term in your tweet message: “#SweepstakesEntry”; and leave the URL to that tweet in a comment on this post
3. Blog about this promotion, including a disclosure that you are receiving a sweepstakes entry in exchange for writing the blog post, and leave the URL to that post in a comment on this post
4. For those with no Twitter or blog, read the official rules to learn about an alternate form of entry.
This giveaway is open to US Residents age 18 or older. Winners will be selected via random draw, and will be notified by e-mail. The notification email will come directly from BlogHer via the sweeps@blogher email address. You will have 72 hours to respond; otherwise a new winner will be selected.
The Official Rules are available here.
This sweepstakes runs from 2/19-3/23.
** Today’s post was sponsored by Johnsonville Sausage.