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Super Simple Sandwiches: The Panini

Updated on January 4, 2013
Paninis are one of the best ideas for any Super Bowl party..or just for a delicious food idea.
Paninis are one of the best ideas for any Super Bowl party..or just for a delicious food idea.

The Panini

The Panini is a true Italian staple. I learned about them while living in Florence, Italy. They have been brought to America and tinkered with to make so many different varieties that they are great for any occasion and almost any taste preference.

Panini literally means little bread. It is derived from the Latin word Pan, which is used by many different cultures, such as the Mexicans, Spanish, Italians, and even Filipinos, as the word for bread. They can be made from a variety of different breads such as Focaccia, French, Sourdough, Wheat, or White Bread. However, I have found that French bread in a baguette form, or Focaccia are the best. However, that is just my opinion.

We will review some simple and easy to make classic and no so classic recipes for Paninis that can be used for everyday meals or great ideas for Super Bowl parties.

Meats, Veggies, Cheese, & Toppings

There are a wide variety of meats, veggies, cheeses, and toppings that can be used to make your panini. The most common are the classic ones such as tomatoes, prosciutto, salami, mortadella, pesto, and mozzarella.

There are many others that people have experimented and been highly pleased with. Some of these include chicken, turkey, ham, eggplant, and a variety of other cheeses and veggies.

One of the Most Classic Paninis

The prosciutto, pesto, tomato, and mozzarella panini is sure to please the crowd, or your family.
The prosciutto, pesto, tomato, and mozzarella panini is sure to please the crowd, or your family.

The Prosciutto, Pesto, Tomato, and Mozzarella Panini

One of the most classic paninis is the prosciutto panini. Prosciutto is a thin smoked slice of ham. For this recipe you will need some focaccia or french bread that has been sliced. You will also need some sliced tomatoes, pesto sauce, and some mozzarella cheese. Once you have these ingredients you are ready to go.

The best and easiest thing to use to make a panini is a panini press that can be found at many stores. They usually run between 30 to 50 dollars depending on their quality. However, if you don't want to purchase a panini press, then you can make them in a pan. Although, making them in the pan, won't allow them to look as cool, as a pan will not make the grill lines on both sides of the bread as a panini press will, but they will still taste the same.

Once you have your ingredients and your cooking gear, then you simply place them and spread them on the inside parts of the bread, heat up whatever you are using to cook them and allow the cheese to melt and the bread to toast.

Then you can slice them to your desired size, but be sure to use a larger sharp knife so you don't push the ingredients out of the sides of the panini.

Now, they can be placed on a plate and served. Yes, it is that simple and, oh so delicious!

Alternative Ideas

The Chicken and Pesto Panini on French Bread

The chicken and pesto panini
The chicken and pesto panini

Ingredients

Grilled or baked boneless chicken breast, pesto, tomatoes, mozzarella or white cheddar, and french or focaccia bread.

Eggplant Panini

Eggpant Paninis are great for vegetarians or simply for a different taste to the panini.
Eggpant Paninis are great for vegetarians or simply for a different taste to the panini.

Wheat bread sliced, sliced eggplant, mozzarella or white cheddar cheese, and a mixture of blended tomatoes, garlic, and basil. Do the latter part in a food processor or blender unless your supermarket sells this mixture.

The Most Classic Panini of Them All

The most classic panini of them all, the tomato, basil, and mozzarella panini.
The most classic panini of them all, the tomato, basil, and mozzarella panini.

The Basil, Tomato, & Mozarella Panini

Here is another great vegetarian idea that even vegetarians will love. This panini's ingredients include mozzarella, sliced tomatoes, fresh basil leaves, and sliced french or sourdough baguette.

More Photos of Various Panini Ideas

There are a multitude of different ideas for paninis. Can you think of one you would like?
There are a multitude of different ideas for paninis. Can you think of one you would like?
Paninis can be slim or thick like this version.
Paninis can be slim or thick like this version.
Paninis can be made to enjoyed by a wide variety of taste buds.
Paninis can be made to enjoyed by a wide variety of taste buds.
The prosciutto, mushroom, onion, and cheese panini.
The prosciutto, mushroom, onion, and cheese panini.

With Super Bowl Sunday just around the corner and many people gearing up to host or attend various Super Bowl Parties this great food idea can be a real party maker. Along with great football, the panini is sure to make your friends and family enjoy the day. They are super easy to make and can help fill your guests or please your hosts when you bring paninis to the party.

Now take a moment to answer the poll questions at the bottom. Thanks for reading!

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    • thesingernurse profile image

      thesingernurse 5 years ago from Rizal, Philippines

      Mouth watering hub. :D

    • vespawoolf profile image

      vespawoolf 5 years ago from Peru, South America

      This is a great hub and the photos give me a hankering for panini. All your sandwiches sound wonderful...I'll have to make one soon!

    • MarkRFox profile image
      Author

      MarkRFox 5 years ago

      Thanks for reading and commenting

    • bridalletter profile image

      Brenda Kyle 5 years ago from Blue Springs, Missouri, USA

      Nice picture ideas for the panini. I recently found a mini machine, so I need some good food tips to use it. Looks like it is open to creativity!

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