Pizza Panini and the phases of trying a new food


I disappeared for a bit. Life took over and the other problem? My older son developed a pretty good addiction to an online tank game and the only way to disrupt it was to move the desktop into our bedroom. Somehow this relocation completely disrupted my work flow. Before I could chuck on a cartoon and plow through a post. Now…they are on my like white on rice the minute I disappear from the living room, convinced something better is going on here at the computer then the Scooby Doo they begged to watch. But I missed this. And I was still making yummy stuff and photographing it and writing the recipes down in random places so not to forget.

I love sharing the food I am cooking but this is also for selfish reasons. I make something that I love, and then promptly forget about it. This is my record for safe keeping.

One of the other complicating life matters was a sudden increase of services for my kids (speech, OT, PT) – with a new speech therapy for my son in Tribeca at 6pm twice a week and on Saturdays. As an aside, he is receiving Prompt therapy, so if you are reading this and have any experience with it would love to hear! And also of course, what you think of this recipe ;-).

Anyways, we end up leaving around 5:15 and get back home 7:15. Smack dab in the middle of dinner/bath/bedtime hours. So I started brainstorming dinners that I could pack in their easy lunch boxes and they could dine in the car while we fight through traffic. Not an ideal eating situation, but we do what we have to, right mommies and daddies?

I call them homemade happy meals and this was a great success – pizza panini. I was not up for battles in the car over food, so wanted to make sure it was nothing that would tweak the little ones out too much. And one of the therapy days is Monday and I do MeatlessMonday all day and this fit in perfectly.

pizza sandwich3 (1 of 1)

I have a panini press because I do find them really convenient and fast. But if you don’t, just make it like you would a grilled cheese and perhaps press down a bit with the spatula to flatten it.

pizza sandwichmatty (1 of 1)

pizza sandwichmattycloseup (1 of 1)I have made this a few times – when I use them in their homemade happy meals I cut them into soldiers- strips the size of your finger for easy eating.

Use whatever bread you want. Tonight I am making them with leftover brioche, the pics are when I made it with a multigrain sub roll from the bakery and I have used regular sturdy whole grain bread.

I also captured my sweet little girl going through the steps of trying a new dish:

What is this?? (the ricotta)

What is this?? (the ricotta)


ok, I will try one bite.

ok, I will try one bite.


I like it!!

I like it!!

Matty wanted to give a thumbs up also but didn't quite get the right fingers.
Matty wanted to give a thumbs up also but didn’t quite get the right fingers.

Pizza Panini
  • multigrain bread
  • ricotta- the freshest you can find.
  • mozzarella (not fresh – too much moisture in that one)
  • tomato paste
  • dried oregano
  • salt and pepper
  1. Spread ricotta on one side of bread and a thin layer tomato paste on other slice.
  2. Sprinkle dried oregano on tomato paste and salt and pepper on ricotta.
  3. Place slices of mozzarella over tomato paste.
  4. Into panini press or non stick pan until melted.


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