Bacon, Cheese and Tomato Panini
3 (2)

Milena rented a house at Cape May, NJ for the summer one year and invited me down for the weekend.  I had never been to Cape May and was excited to visit one of the country’s oldest vacation resorts. The entire city oozes charm and is designated as a National Historic Landmark because of its Victorian architecture.

I do not know if it was the ocean air or the charm of this seaside village but the sandwich she prepared for lunch one day was the best I had ever had.  Looking back, it is an amazingly simple sandwich and that perhaps is what makes it so good.  Over the years I have tweaked the recipe slightly, but it always brings back memories of that special summer.

I make the sandwich in a panini press.  If you do not have a panini press you have two options:  make it in a skillet or buy a panini press.  And I recommend the latter.  Panini presses are so easy to use, affordable and elevate a sandwich to a new level.  Here is how I make the sandwich.

Using 2 slices of thick white bread, butter one side of both slices and lay them out on your board, butter side down.  Place sliced cheese on one slice of bread.  I used Gouda this time, but extra sharp cheddar is delicious or any good melting cheese of your choice.  Then lay strips of cooked bacon on top of the cheese.  Typically, I use one and a half slices of bacon cut to fit the bread.  Then lay a couple of slices of tomatoes on top of the bacon.  Next, place a basil leave on top of each slice of tomato.  More slices of cheese go on top of that then cap with the other slice of bread, buttered side up.

When the panini press is heated, slide the sandwich on the grates, close and cook for 3 minutes.  Take it out of the press and let it rest on your board for 3 minutes before cutting and serving.

I hope you love this sandwich as much as I do.  And now that you have a panini press (hopefully) you can use it for all different kind of sandwiches.  Enjoy!

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