Monday, August 14, 2006

I'm in Love: Grill Pan and Panini Press

Last week, we roadtripped to a warehouse sale for a popular catalog retailer. As we rummaged through items, I spent some time digging through mashed boxes in the "as is" section. Along one row, on a pallet base sat 10 or so large boxes all seemingly crushed on one corner. It was cookware -- and not just anything, but Le Creuset.

I'm a fan of this popular French cast iron and enamel goodness and pick up pieces when ever I can. It's pricy and unless you're willing to spend the money, you have to be happy mixing colors by picking up sale items. I try to stick to their basic blue, green and flame red. Over the years I've acquired various Le Creuset stock pots, a roasting pan, and my pride of kitchen -- a tagine. So, the best part already was that it was marked to $49.99.

And in this box? The 10-inch Le Creuset grill pan and panini press (in red, natch). Now, I've been toying with the idea of a grill pan for a while. It's appealing to me to pan grill fish and chicken with actual grill marks. And while a panini press (especially a cast iron press that easily weighs 8 pounds) wasn't high on my list of needs, I've fallen in love.

For almost every meal in the past three days I've had panini pressed sandwiches sealing all manner of meat, cheese and veggies into crispy grilled bread. Perfectly toasted grilled cheeses, tomato, basil, and mozzarella pressed and melted into toasty goodness, turkey and queso fresco pressed in flat bread, perfectly crispy pita hot with hummas and tomatoes. Ohh, who knew grill marks could taste this good! I'll be trying the grill pan on meat next, but for now, I'm all about the panini.

No comments: