Charred Broccoli Rabe Panini with Crispy Prosciutto and Burrata

After the excitement of last week, I’ve been riding an “omg, is this real” high coupled with the reality of “oh shoot, this is real.” We’re (Vienna and I) are in full book mode and already gearing up for my (sorry V, quarantine is no joke) first research trip back home. The outpouring of support from all of you has been overwhelmingly wonderful. I feel like my heart is gonna explode, so a million thank yous and then a million more after that.

All of a sudden, I feel a sense of urgency to tackle all the things. Here’s a list of things I’m currently working on:

  • Marie Kondo-ing the crap out of my life. Never thought my drawers would look this good, ever.
  • Making lots of to-do lists aka project managing overload.
  • Working on my fitness schedule—I mean working out… but really scheduling all my workouts for the next year because #recipetesting for book and blog…
  • Researching airfare to Maui, Oahu, Kauai, and the Big Island for every month this year.
  • Procrastinating on all work and online browsing instead. Sézane, you’ll be the end of my bank account.
  • Building the perfect panini. FYI, I now feel like that’s a real life skill. Also, this broccoli rabe panini might have cracked the code. 

Here’s what I’ve learned regarding panini building. Butter the outsides of your slice—you’re gonna need that butter to brown and crisp your bread! Always add something green and healthy, in this case, charred chili and lemon broccoli rabe! Not only will it make you feel better about your lunch #health, it also adds loads of gorgeous color, texture, and in this case a little kick and some lemony zing. Next, texture… find your cheese. I wanted something super luxurious, so naturally, I went for the big gun: buratta. It’s creamy, almost buttery and just melts in your mouth. And the final piece of the puzzle, meat or a meat alternative protein, or even more veggies if you yourself are veggie. I highly recommend crispy prosciutto but chicken is right up there on my list of panini greats. And that’s it. Panini keys to success.

CHARRED BROCCOLI RABE PANINI WITH CRISPY PROSCIUTTO AND BURRATA

MAKES 2 PANINI

INGREDIENTS

  • 10 broccoli rabe stalks, trimmed
  • 2 Tbsp. kosher salt
  • Salt and pepper, to taste
  • ¼ tsp. crushed aleppo chili flakes
  • Zest of ½ a lemon
  • 1 Tbsp. extra virgin olive oil
  • 4 thin slices prosciutto, torn into strips
  • 8 oz. burrata, drained and thoroughly dried                                       
  • 3 Tbsp. unsalted butter, softened
  • 4 slices sourdough bread

TOOLS

  • Mixing bowl
  • Whisk
  • Sharp heavy knife
  • Baking pan, lined with parchment
  • Frying pan
  • Spatula

FIX

  1. Fill a medium pot with enough water to cover the broccoli rabe and bring to a boil. Add 2 tablespoons of kosher salt to the water after it comes to a rolling boil and immediately add the broccoli rabe. Blanch for 10 seconds, then promptly transfer to an ice bath. Drain and thoroughly dry.
  2. Toss the broccoli rabe with 1 tablespoon of extra virgin olive oil, salt and pepper, to taste, Aleppo chili flakes, and half of the lemon zest. Set a grill pan over medium-high heat and wait for the pan to get hot. Arrange the broccoli rabe on grill pan, with the grills sitting perpendicular, and cook for 4-5 minutes before turning and grilling the other side for 3-4 minutes.
  3. Transfer the broccoli rabe to a sheet pan and top with remaining lemon zest.
  4. In a medium skillet set over medium-high heat, place the prosciutto strips and cook until crisp, around 2 minutes per side. Transfer to the sheet pan with the broccoli rabe.
  5. Butter one side of each sourdough slice and reheat the grill pan over medium heat. Set two slices of sourdough, butter side down, on the grill and top each slice with exactly half of the following: burrata, broccoli rabe, and prosciutto before topping with the other two slices sourdough, butter side up.
  6. Place a heavy skillet over the paninis and cook for about 2 minutes, then flip both paninis and cook for another two minutes.
  7. Serve immediately.

A huge thank you to Andy Boy Broccoli Rabe for sponsoring this post! As always, all photos, words, and opinions are my own, like the fact that charred chili lemon broccoli rabe is my jam.