September 23, 2010

Jen's Turkey & Roasted Red Pepper Melt with Pesto Mayo

There is a cafe at my gym where I eat lunch with the kids at least once or twice a week. All their food is yummy and healthy, with the calorie content posted on the menu. I borrowed this idea from my favorite gym cafe sandwich and tweaked it a bit. I always seem to have turkey on hand, so this sandwich is fast and simple to assemble. Dare I say it is quickly becoming my busy night go-to dinner plan!

Jen's Turkey & Roasted Red Pepper Melt with Pesto Mayo

For sandwich:
olive oil
1/4 of a large red onion, sliced thin
1 cup of baby spinach
1 jar of roasted red peppers, blotted dry & cut into strips
1/2 lb. of lean, white deli turkey meat (nitrate/nitrite free)
4 slices of provolone cheese
4 sandwich thins, any shape
pesto mayo (see below)

For Pesto Mayo:
1/2 cup of mayo
1 Tablespoon of lemon juice
1 garlic clove, minced
2-3 Tablespoons of pesto (adjust to suit your tastes)
salt and pepper to taste

Combine mayo, lemon juice, garlic, and pesto in a small bowl. Mix well and add salt and pepper to taste. Set aside.

Heat grill pan on medium high. Rub both top and bottom pieces of sandwich thins with a few drops of olive oil, on both sides of the bread. Assemble sandwich ingredients by spreading a small amount of pesto mayo on both sides of the bread. Next, layer the bottom half of the sandwich with red onion and spinach leaves. On the top half layer provolone slices, roasted red pepper strips, and turkey. Press both halves of the sandwich together. Place sandwich on grill pan, then press it by weighing it down with a sandwich press or another heavy pan. Grill for 3 minutes and flip the sandwich over, making sure to press the reverse side. Grill for another 3 minutes. Remove sandwich to a cutting board, cut on a diagonal (it's prettier that way), and serve.

Jen's Notes:
The pesto mayo makes enough for leftovers. I like to slather it on a veggie burger for lunch, or make a yummy breakfast sandwich by substituting scrambled eggs for the turkey in this recipe. Either way, it is freakin' awesome!

The Result:
This is such an easy dinner and a total crowd-pleaser. Both my husband and son love this sandwich. I served our melts with a cheater-baked (i.e. microwaved) potato and a side salad. Yum! As I said before, this meal was great busy-night food!

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