Panino with Roasted Peppers, Pesto & Arugula {Midsummer Potluck for Peace}
  • 1 cup good white wine vinegar
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 50g sugar
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1 medium red onion, peeled and thinly sliced
  • 2 large yellow peppers (green or red are also delicious)
  • Pinch salt
  • 4-5 basil leaves, julienned or finely chopped
  • Extra Virgin olive oil
  • Drizzle of balsamic vinegar
  • Slices sourdough bread (your favorite!)
  • Pesto (use vegan pesto if vegan)
  • Roasted Peppers
  • Pickled Onions
  • Dried tomatoes preserved in olive oil
  • Arugula and wild arugula blossoms
  • A few pretty mallow petals or other wild flowers
  • ADD ONS: a good chevre or pecorino, or avocado if vegan
  1. Prepare a clean glass jar that can fit all the ingredients.
  2. In a pot, combine the vinegar, salt, sugar and bayleaf and heat, stirring, just until the sugar and salt have dissolved.
  3. Add the onion slices to the jar and pour over the warm pickling liquid. Top with the bay leaf and let cool, then refrigerate for a few hours before using. Keeps in the fridge for several days.
  1. Add the peppers whole to the rack of an oven, preheated to 220 C˚ / 430 F˚. Roast, turing every now and then, until completely cooked through. The peppers will release moisture and they will turn very soft. Roasting could take anywhere from 15 to 30 minutes, so check often.
  2. Once very soft, take them out of the oven and let cool. The skin will come off easily, so peel them, cut them into ½ inch strips and remove the core and seeds.
  3. Add the strips to a shallow dish, and toss with the basil, salt, plenty of olive oil and a good drizzle of balsamic. These peppers will also keep in the fridge for a few days.
  1. If taking the panino out for a picnic, I suggest packing the single ingredients and assembling them on the spot, as all the ingredients are kind of moist. Use good quality or homemade sourdough bread, so the slices will be delicious even if not toasted or if they have been left out for a while, as sourdough bread tends to stay soft for days.
  2. Layer all the ingredients to your heart's content and dig in with friends! Aged goat cheese or pecorino go wonderfully with this combination of ingredients, but a little avocado will do magic if you want to keep things vegan.
Recipe by Hortus Natural Cooking by Valentina Solfrini at