Aired March 17, 2014
8 5-inch square pieces focaccia
1 pound honey-glazed ham, cut into slices (preferably from a ham leg so that the slices are rustic, not sliced deli-style)
8 ounces sliced Gruyère cheese
3 ounces fresh baby spinach leaves (about 3 cups)
Pear and Mustard Chutney or pesto
2 tablespoons butter, at room temperature
For the Pear and Mustard Chutney:
1 cup apple cider vinegar
3/4 cup (packed) light brown sugar
1 small onion, finely chopped
1/4 cup coarse-grain mustard
Grated zest of 1 orange
4 Anjou pears, peeled, cored and coarsely chopped
For the chutney, combine the vinegar, brown sugar, onion, mustard and orange zest in a heavy saucepan and bring to a boil over medium heat. Reduce the heat and simmer for about 20 minutes, or until the onions are tender and the liquid has thickened slightly.
Add the pears and continue simmering gently for about 30 minutes, or until the pears soften and the liquid thickens some more. Let the chutney cool, and then keep it in the refrigerator in an airtight container. (The chutney will keep for up to a week).
Preheat the panini press.
Cut the bread in half horizontally and arrange the halves, cut side up. Place the ham and cheese over the bottom halves of the bread. Scatter the spinach over the ham and cheese. Spoon the chutney over the spinach. Cover with the bread tops. Brush the tops with butter.
Cook in the panini press for about 1 minute, or until the top and bottom are crisp. Serve immediately.