My husband and I miss living in the city. A lot. So much so that we cry every time we drive down 290 and see the skyline. For us, there was so much to love about Chicago – the sights, the culture, and of course, the food. About 99% of my favorite meals have all been eaten in places among the skyscrapers. Lets’s just say it was hard adjusting to suburban food (nothing against the burbs – we now have some favorite restaurants here too).
One of the activities I would look forward to the most while living in Chicago was the Green City Market, which took place outside of Lincoln Park Zoo. It’s one of the biggest farmer’s markets I’ve ever been to – great produce and a lot of diverse food vendors. We had a couple of favorite vendors and almost every time we went, we couldn’t resist ordering from Gayle’s Best Ever Grilled, a vendor who made delicious grilled cheese and an absolutely incredible breakfast sandwich. Seriously, the best breakfast sandwich ever. It had sausage that seemed to be soaked in maple syrup, eggs, and sharp, salty white cheddar cheese. Grilled and all melted together.
While we would have loved for Gayle and her posse to deliver breakfast sandwiches to our door every morning, we knew that would never be possible, so we decided to recreate it ourselves one weekend. I’d say we definitely accomplished properly replicating the sandwich and have been making it frequently ever since!
Below is the recipe to this sweet and savory charmer. It’s perfect for weekend brunch and pretty easy to make for multiple people, if having guests over for brunch is your thing (it’s totally a thing in our household!). If you end up making this maple syrup breakfast panini, don’t forget to tag your photos with #marinamakeseats.
Maple Syrup Breakfast Panini
Makes 2 sandwiches
- 4 breakfast sausage patties
- Maple syrup
- 5 large eggs
- Salt and pepper
- 4-6 oz of sharp white cheddar cheese (thinly sliced)
- 4 thick slices of multi-grain or whole wheat bread
- 1 tablespoon of butter
In a medium frying pan, cook the sausage patties over medium-high heat. Flatten each patty with a spatula and drizzle generously with maple syrup. Flip after about five minutes, or until the sausage is browned. Cook on the other side until the sausage is cooked through. Lower the heat and set sausage aside, but keep drippings in the pan for the eggs.
Beat the eggs and a couple of pinches of salt and pepper in a bowl. Pour the eggs into the same pan you used for the sausage and cook over medium-low heat (low and slow is the key to good scrambled eggs), scrapping the bottom of the pan to pick up any leftover grease and syrup. Set aside
Turn on your panini press or heat a large frying pan over medium heat. While the press or pan is pre-heating, butter the outsides of slices of bread (the parts that will be touching the press or pan). Top each slice of bread with eggs, sausage, a generous drizzle of maple syrup and slices of white cheddar cheese. Place other slice of bread on top and cook until the cheese is melted and both sides of the sandwich are golden brown. Cut in half and drizzle with a tiny bit more maple syrup (if desired).