I just bought a Lodge cast iron grill pan and a Lodge cast iron panini press, and I am in love. Last night for dinner (and again for lunch today), I made panini. They tasted delicious, and the pan and press were easy to clean. (Also, both the pan and the press were made right here in the USA!) Here’s what to do:
Melt about four tablespoons of butter in the grill pan over low heat. Make a sandwich–I used Berlin Bakery non-GMO spelt bread, Hope Springs Farm grass-fed farmers cheese, and Wegmans organic turkey breast slices–and put the whole sandwich in the grill pan. Top it with the panini press.
Keep in mind that cast iron gets VERY HOT. Always use oven mitts with a suitable level of insulation when you handle the grill pan or the panini press.
Allow the sandwich to cook for about five minutes; then remove the panini press, flip the sandwich using tongs, and replace the panini press on top of the sandwich for another five minutes. Ta-da! Panini! My daughter said that she prefers my panini to Panera. Now that’s high praise!