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Sauteed Mushroom, Prosciutto, and Tallegio Panini

Panini are Italian sandwiches that are typically made in a sandwich press. You can achieve the same result by placing a cast-iron or other heavy skillet on top of the sandwiches as they are cooking. Taleggio is a ripened, semisoft cow's-milk cheese with a distinctive pungency. For milder flavor, you could substitute either Brie or Bel Paese.

  • Yield: Makes 4 sandwiches

Source: Martha Stewart Living, October 2002

Ingredients

  • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, plus more for brushing
  • 1 shallot, thinly sliced
  • 1 pound fresh wild mushrooms, such as chanterelle, shiitake, or oyster, brushed clean and thinly sliced
  • 1 teaspoon chopped fresh thyme or oregano leaves
  • Coarse salt and freshly ground pepper
  • 1/2 recipe Focaccia or 1 loaf ciabatta bread, cut into quarters
  • 2 ounces prosciutto, thinly sliced
  • 1/2 pound Taleggio cheese, sliced 1/4 inch thick

Directions

  1. Heat the oil in a large saute pan over medium heat. Add shallot, and cook until soft and translucent, about 2 minutes. Raise heat to medium-high; add mushrooms. Cook, stirring occasionally, until they are soft, golden brown, and most of the juices have evaporated, about 8 minutes. Add thyme or oregano, and season with salt and pepper. Remove from heat.

  2. Preheat oven to 200 degrees. Heat a griddle or large cast-iron skillet over medium-low heat. Slice bread in half horizontally. Layer each of the bottom halves with mushroom mixture, prosciutto, and cheese. Cover with remaining top bread halves.

  3. Brush outer sides of bread with oil, spreading it to the edges. Place two sandwiches in skillet or on griddle, and weight with a sandwich press or the bottom of another skillet. Cook until golden brown on first side, 3 to 4 minutes; turn, and continue cooking until other side is golden and the cheese has completely melted, 3 to 4 minutes more. Transfer to a baking sheet, and keep warm in the oven while making remaining sandwiches. Serve immediately.

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