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
  • 1¾ tsp. active dry yeast (1 package)
  • 8 cups bread flour
  • 2 tsp. sugar
  • ½ 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 8–10 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" thick. Slice 3" 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 10–20 minutes. Cool completely on a rack.