Thursday, March 8, 2012

Chicken, Mango, Avocado and Cilantro Pesto Panini

Say that three times fast!  (Actually I just did it, and it's not too bad)

I recently received a new panini maker and a cookbook.  Ever since I have been eyeing this recipe.  I have a love for mango and pesto and everything that has to do with this sandwich, really.  I had never made pesto with cilantro before but was completely confident in my premature love of it.  And I was right to love it even before making it.  
I probably could have just eaten it alone, and I might have had a spoonful or so before spreading onto sandwiches.  I made some cuban rolls for these sandwiches (because that's what the recipe calls for) but I wasn't entirely happy with how they turned out.  I have made them twice now and didn't love them either time.  So I can't recommend a great cuban roll recipe today.  You could buy some hoagies or next time, I think I will just use one of my french bread recipes {HERE, HERE} and make some hoagie shaped rolls.  Even with the rolls being less than perfect, these sandwiches still were utterly delicious!  If you don't have a panini maker, you could just grill them with a grill pan, or just cook in a regular frying pan, like a cheese sandwich.  Either way, you've gotta try them. :)

Chicken, Mango and Cilantro Pesto Panini (I just did it again)
Adapted from: Panini  

1/4 cup pine nuts
1 1/2 cups cilantro leaves
2-3 green onions, roughly chopped
2 tsp minced garlic or 2 cloves
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 cup olive oil (I used about 1/3)
1/4 cup Monterey Jack cheese, grated
2 tsp fresh lime juice
jalepeno, optional (I, of course, didn't use it)

Toast pine nuts in a skillet over med-low heat.  Cook, stirring until lightly toasted, 3-5 minutes.  Watch closely, they can burn quickly.  Transfer to a plate to cool.  In a food processor, combine pine nuts, cilantro leaves, green onion, garlic, salt and jalapeno (if using).  Process to a coarse puree.  With motor running, slowly pour in olive oil and process to smooth puree.  Add cheese and lime juice and pulse to blend.

5-6 chicken tenderloins, grilled and shredded
2 T mayonnaise
2 tsp caribbean jerk sauce (optional)

Mix all together in a bowl.

4 hoagies, split
1 T olive oil
1/4 tsp allspice

Mix allspice and olive oil.  Brush outsides of rolls with mixture and then flip to fill inside.

1 mango, sliced
about 8 slices red onion
1 avocado, sliced
1 tomato, sliced

Spread pesto over both sides of roll, add remaining ingredients and close sandwich.  Grill until chicken and mango are warm, or until panini maker indicates done.  Serves 4


  1. Amanda, you are amazing. I'm sure your family just loves the delicious foods you make!!

  2. I love every single item on this recipe, amazing!!

  3. Ooh, this panini looks delicious, although I'm not a huge fan of raw onions. I'll substitute in caramelized onions, and it's perfect! Great photo!

  4. I love the addition of mango.

  5. The combination of these ingredients make for one delightful sandwich. Will be printing this one! Thanks!


  6. This looks and sounds delicious! I love chicken and mango together.


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