The word “panini” is of Italian origin. In the Italian language, however, “panini” is plural. In the US and lots of other countries, it is singular. You might go into Panera or someplace else and order a panini and get one sandwich, while in Italy, if you say panini, they might wait to hear how many. The proper singular word is “panino”. I guess this type of thing happens all the time with words…
Panini are typically made on ciabatta and are stuffed, most popularly, with prosciutto (or another type of cured meat) and cheese. I chose the prosciutto and cheese combo last night. The most important thing is balance when making panini. You definitely don’t want to over stuff the sandwich and you want to make sure the flavors compliment one another.
ciabatta, tomato, cheese, prosciutto
For our panini, I cut two fairly thin slices of ciabatta per person and lightly brushed them with olive oil.
I cut four slices of tomato, two per sandwich, put two slices of prosciutto on each sandwich, and then cut six slices of Parmigiano-Reggiano, three per sandwich.
I then put the panini on the pan and set the temperature on low, took another pan and lightly pressed down. After a few minutes, I checked the bottom to see if the desired darkness had been reached. I then flipped panini and repeated.
I served them with a salad.