Lately I’ve been a bit too into spicy. It seems I’ve been eating a lot of buffalo hot wings — or been craving them at the very least. And I’ve been trying hard to use the chipotle mayo since I made a tub of it last week. Considering that I love both buffalo sauce and chipotle mayo, I thought I would try a combination of the two in a sandwich and see what kind of magical flavor explosion would take place in my mouth.
- olive oil
- 1 egg
- dry, old bread
- Ritz crackers
- garlic salt
- crushed red chili pepper
- individual sized French bread
- fresh mozzarella cheese
- 1 boneless, skinless chicken breast
- sliced tomato
- hot sauce
- chipotle mayo
- In a blender, grind old crusty bread and Ritz crackers. I added a sprinkling of garlic salt (because I used sourdough bread that was a bit sweet) and a bit too much crushed red paper flakes (to intensify the heat even more). I probably added at least 2 T. of crushed red chili flakes. That might be a bit too much. Put the breadcrumb mixture in a bowl.
- In another bowl crack an egg and whip it up. Dip a boneless skinless chicken breast into the egg mixture to cover then into the bread crumbs and completely coat with the crumbs.
- Heat some olive oil in a frying pan over medium heat. Place the chicken breast in the oil and fry 10 to 15 minutes, flipping once.
- While the chicken is cooking prepare the rest of your ingredients. (Slice the bread, cheese, tomatoes, etc.)
- When the chicken is cooked, cube the chicken and place in a plastic Ziploc bag. Add 2 T. buffalo sauce and toss.
- Smear your bread with chipotle mayo. Layer with tomatoes, buffalo chicken, and mozzarella cheese. Heat in your Panini press and enjoy!
I decided to take a page from Subway and try to cut out the middle of the bread to stuff the ingredients inside and cover before putting into the Panini press.
Though messy, the sandwich still tasted great. However, I’ll admit that the chipotle flavor kind of overshadowed the buffalo sauce as well as the spicy breading. Nonetheless, by the time I’d eaten my way through all the chicken my nose was running pretty profusely.
The big mistake was bread. I believe the it fell apart because of the way I cut it compounded by the combination of the mayo and the buffalo sauce. (All the sauce soaked into the bread and made it soggy.) Next time I try this sandwich I’ll cut the bread in half (like normal) and cut back on the buffalo sauce.
Spicy Buffalo Chicken Panini with Chipotle Mayo: Take Two
The next day with leftover chicken in the fridge, I decided to try my dream Panini again. This time I sliced the French bread in half lengthwise, sliced the chicken into thin slices, cut back on the cheese and mayo, and added some avocado (after I pressed the sandwich). Take two worked out much better. The bread wasn’t soggy, but the sandwich was still very messy — the avocado kept wanting to slide right out.
There were two minor problems with the sandwich: the cheese and the flavor ratio. I simply couldn’t get the mozzarella to melt (even though I sliced the cheese in half so it would melt more easily.) I had to pop the top half of the sandwich (bread and cheese) into the microwave for 30 seconds. That solved the problem! As for the flavor, this time the buffalo seemed to overshadow the chipotle. This time I smeared mayo on the bottom bread only — perhaps I should have done two thin layers on both sides of the bread.