Italian Panini

Panini is an Italian sandwich roll, but in the United States it has come to mean specifically a grilled sandwich. These rolls make a great sandwich, grilled or not.

Serves: 8Hands-on: 30 minutesTotal: 11 hours 20 minutesDifficulty: Medium

Serves: 8


  • 1 cup water
  • 1 3⁄4 tsp. active dry yeast (1 package)
  • 8 cups bread flour
  • 2 tsp. sugar
  • 1⁄2 cup olive oil
  • 2 tsp. kosher salt
  • 2 Tbsp. cornmeal


  • To make the sponge, combine water and yeast, stir to dissolve and let stand 5 minutes. Add 1 cup bread flour and beat 1 minute. Cover and let stand at room temperature 8 hours.
  • Add to the sponge the sugar, oil, salt, and enough bread flour to make a soft dough. Turn out onto a floured work surface and knead 8 to 10 minutes. Add flour only to reduce stickiness. Return to bowl, dust with flour, cover with plastic, and rise at room temperature until doubled in volume, about 2 hours.
  • Line a baking sheet with parchment and sprinkle with cornmeal. Turn risen dough onto a floured surface. Shape into a rope, about 2 inches thick. Slice 3-inch pieces, then roll each into a tight ball. Place on prepared pan, dust with flour, cover loosely with plastic wrap, and proof for 30 minutes. Preheat oven to 375°F.
  • Place a pan of cold water at the bottom of the oven to create steam, and bake until golden brown, about 10 to 20 minutes. Cool completely on a rack.