Michael Howell's Panini Toscano

You could also use Canadian Provolone or smoked Mozzarella to replace Havarti


  • 1 fresh ciabatta bun, about 5" (12cm) square
  • 1 tbsp (15 mL) lemon aioli
  • 1 ripe fig cut into 4-5 slices
  • 2 slices of Parma prosciutto thinly shaved
  • 2 slices 1 oz (30g) each Canadian Havarti cheese, 1/8" (2mm ) thick
  • 1 oz (30g) fresh baby arugula
  • ½ roasted red pepper, peeled & cut into ¾" (2 cm) slices
  • 1 tbsp (15 mL) balsamic vinaigrette

Lemon Aioli Ingredients

  • ¼ cup (60 mL) prepared olive oil mayonnaise
  • Juice and zest from ½ a lemon
  • 1 clove garlic

Balsamic Vinaigrette Ingredients

  • 1 tsp (5 ml) balsamic vinegar
  • Pinch of salt and pepper
  • ½ tsp (2 mL) Dijon mustard
  • Pinch of sugar
  • Juice of ½ lemon
  • ¼ cup (60 mL) extra virgin olive oil 


Preparation & Cooking

1. Mix aioli ingredients together and let flavours mingle for ½ an hour.

2. Split the fresh ciabatta in ½ and brush both sides liberally with the lemon aioli.

 3. Layer one slice of havarti cheese on the bottom of the bun, then top with the sliced figs, prosciutto, couple sprigs of arugula and finish with other slice of cheese.

4. Top with the other side of the bun, place in a pre-heated panini press and grill until cheese is melting and bread is lightly marked.

5. If using a grill or barbeque, place a weight on top of sandwich and flip halfway through cooking.

6. While sandwich is grilling, make vinaigrette by combining first five ingredients in a small bowl. Slowly whisk in oil until incorporated.

7. In other small bowl, dress arugula with 1 tbsp of vinaigrette and place on a plate.

8. Toss two slices of red pepper in same bowl to dress lightly and place on top of salad.

9. When sandwich is ready, remove from press and split in ½ diagonally.

10. Place around salad and serve immediately.

11. Lightly brush the bun on both sides with extra virgin olive oil and If using a grill or bbq place a weight on top of sandwich and flip ½ way through cooking.


Preparation time: 30 minutes

Cooking time: 10 minutes

Yield: 1 serving


Nutritional Information Per Serving

Energy             654 Cal.

Protein             32 g

Carbohydrate  51 g

Fat                   37 g

Fibre                5.1 g

Sodium            1542 mg

Calcium           591 mg