Fried Eggplant Panini with Black Olive Pate

Another great recipe idea using our black olive pâté are panini! This panino is easy, but it requires a lot of steps. It’s all worth it, though, because the result is incredible. Breaded fried eggplant is one of my favorite things to eat, and this time works for a panino. Next time you can use the same recipe as an appetizer or even as a tasty snack with any vegetable spread.

– Luca Manfe

Directions

  1. Preheat the oven to 415 degrees F.
  2. Place the red bell peppers in a casserole dish or baking tray.
  3. Roast for 25 minutes, until dark. They will look burned outside, but that is how you want them.
  4. Take them out of the oven and place them in a salad bowl and cover with plastic wrap. The steam will ease the peeling process.
  5. When the peppers are warm enough to not burn your hands, start to peel them. Clean them from pit and seeds, slice into thin slices and set aside.
  6. Prepare three bowls for breading the eggplant: one with flour, one with the whisked eggs and one with panko. Coat the eggplant slice on both sides with flour, then do the same thing on the eggs and panko.
  7. In a large skillet or saucepan heat the vegetable oil to 350 degrees F over medium heat and fry the eggplant slices until golden brown on both sides. Remove the eggplant from the skillet and blot lightly on paper towels and sprinkle with salt.
  8. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.
  9. Now put your paninis together: slice the ciabatta/focaccia rolls in half, horizontally. Spread the olive pate on only one side of each roll. Layer the roasted peppers, fried eggplant and sliced mozzarella on top of the side with the pate.
  10. Cover each roll with the other slice of bread and place the paninis on a baking sheet and place in the oven for 8/10 minutes or until the cheese is melted.
  11. Cut each sandwich in half and buon appetito!

 

Serves

4

Method

Stove Top

Time

15

Difficulty

5

Ingredients

1/4 cup all-purpose flour

1 cup panko bread crumbs

2 eggs

1 medium eggplant, cut lengthwise into 1/4-inch slices

Vegetable oil for frying

4 slices focaccia/ciabatta

1/2 cup Black Olive Pate

2 roasted red bell peppers, peeled and seeded

8oz fresh mozzarella, sliced