The Return of the Panini

Oh, you guys.

How was your day?  Mine was ok, but someone said something mean to me, and it really got under my skin.   I know he was joking, but it still hurt.  I’m trying to shake it off, but I seriously almost started crying at our workroom lunch table.  I’m hoping I regained my composure ok (I hate to be the girl that cries at work!), but I guess my skin just isn’t thick enough to take certain barbs.  I know it’s ok to have soft spots, but it just felt really unfair. Sad smile

When I got home this afternoon, I was determined to break free from my bummed out mood.  Tried and true, running makes me feel better every.single.time.  The sky looked a bit threatening, so I did a cardio jumble in my apartment complex’s fitness center that included some time on both the treadmill and the elliptical.

This was inspired by a 30-20-10 workout that I jotted down in my trusty workout notebook.  I can’t remember exactly where I saw this first, so if it’s from you, please let me know so I can give you credit! Open-mouthed smile

30 minutes: Treadmill

Minutes Pace
0-10 6.5
10-20 7.0
20-30 7.5
Total 3.5 miles

During those last 10 minutes, I was huffing and puffing and dying! I wanted to quit, but I kept telling myself, You’re stronger than you think!  You can do this! Hey guess what?  I did do it! YAY me!

20 minutes: Elliptical @ speeds of ~9-10

I don’t know precisely my speed on the elliptical because I am a crackhead and have to cover the display!  But the couple of times I uncovered it to check my progress, the speed was hovering right between 9 and 10.

10 minutes: Treadmill

Minutes Pace Incline
0-5 4.0 8
5-10 3.5 4

I had planned to do all 10 minutes walking at the 8 incline, but I was tired!  So I ramped down for the last 5 and called it good.

Even though I worked up a good sweat and felt a lot better, I wasn’t 100% there yet, so I did a little Body by Bethenny on Exercise TV.  The stretching and deep breathing were just the thing I needed to round out my workout.

While I was doing all this today, I got to thinking about how lucky I am that I have my afternoons/evenings pretty much free to do whatever I want.  I love having the freedom to be able to do an extra long workout if I feel like I need it.  What a treat to reflect on something so simple and feel so fortunate!


Tonight was the return of the panini!  I seriously don’t think I will ever tire of sandwiches on perfectly toasted, uber crunchy bread!  I think it’s safe to say I’m a little panini obsessed!

Check out all of the paninis I’ve made in the last couple of months!

Bacon, Lettuce, Avocado, & Tomato Panini

Bagelwich Breakfast Panini

Eggplant Mozzarella Panini

Strawberry Mozzarella Thyme Panini

Peanut Butter & Jelly Panini

Making her debut tonight, courtesy of this little guy . . .

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BBQ Chicken Panini

2 T. onions, diced

1/2 T. olive oil

4 oz. cooked shredded chicken

2 T. BBQ sauce

2 T. shredded colby jack cheese (or any shredded cheese you have on hand)

1 ciabatta roll

Caramelize the onions in the olive oil over medium-low to low heat, stirring occasionally, for about 25 minutes.  BBQ Chicken Panini 001

I am slightly obsessed with caramelized onions.  I’ll spare you the gritty details, but we are having quite the love affair.  Who needs to date when you can just sit around caramelizing onions all day?  They always make me happy.  They never let me down.  I can see them or not see them whenever I like.  It’s a match made in heaven.

While your onions are busy getting happy, shred up the chicken and stir the barbecue sauce in to coat.

BBQ Chicken Panini 002BBQ Chicken Panini 003

Also, hollow out the insides of the ciabatta to make room for the chicken!

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Ready Freddy!

When the onions have caramelized, add the chicken to the pan and stir just to combine and reheat the chicken, about 1 minute.

BBQ Chicken Panini 004

Mound the chicken mixture onto one side of your roll and load the other side up with cheese, like so.

BBQ Chicken Panini 008

Put your big kid pants on and be brave.  Stealthily (yep, I said stealthily) invert the cheesy side onto the chicken-y side.

BBQ Chicken Panini 009

Phew!  It was touch and go for a minute there, but I made it!  Onto the panini press she goes for about 6 minutes.

And then . . .

BBQ Chicken Panini 010

Crunchy, gooey, saucy deliciousness!

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I realized as I was eating this that I was, ahem, inhaling it.  I made myself slow down so that I could really enjoy it!  But really, it was just SO SO good.  I couldn’t get enough!

Despite my less than civilized consumption of dinner, I kept up appearances by eating at my dining room table again tonight!

BBQ Chicken Panini 011

See?  I can be a grown up!  For 2 days in a row!  That counts, right???

I added another spinach and cherry tomato salad as well as some sweet potato chips (that got away from me in the oven but were still fantastic!) on the side.

Time to catch up on my DVR’ed Bethenny Ever After! My favorite part of Tuesday!  If my workout and great dinner didn’t fix my bummed out mood, Bethenny sure will! Smile

What’s your tried and true fix when you’re feeling bummed?


7 thoughts on “The Return of the Panini

  1. That panini looks delish! 🙂 I love ooey gooey sandwiches!

    sorry you had a rough day, when I’m feeling low I like to get some love from my pup. Also I write in fact the post I wrote today was about rude comments a reader made on another bloggers website. I wanted to boost spirits! 🙂

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