You can make a great sandwich by packing all of your favorite ingredients in between two slices of bread. But when you pack those same ingredients in a panini, it takes your sandwich to another level. Whether you want to make a roasted tomato grilled cheese panini, tuna melt panini, or a chicken parmesan panini, there's something about that crunchy bread with those delicious-looking grill marks that makes your sandwich even more appetizing. But the key to all great panini sandwiches is using the perfect bread. That's why you should make sure that your panini bread is on the denser side.
If you make a panini with bread that's too soft or too thin, it will completely flatten under the pressure of your grill and become soggy from all of your sandwich ingredients while it's heating. However, if you use denser bread, it will withstand the pressure from your grill and remain thick once your panini is done cooking. So how thick should your panini bread be?
Use Half-Inch Thick Bread To Make A Panini
There are all kinds of bread that you can use that will be thick enough for a smooth grilling process resulting in a hearty sandwich. These include ciabatta, focaccia, rye, French, and sourdough. But no matter which bread you use, your slices should always be about a ½-inch thick. If you use slices that are thicker than that, you'll taste way too much bread when you bite into your panini. But if your bread is less than a ½-inch thick, it will get crushed under the weight of your grill, resulting in a misshapen or flat, thin sandwich that may not be as satisfying to eat.
When you grill a panini with ½-inch thick bread, it will be able to keep its shape and texture while on the grill, resulting in a panini with just enough bread in every bite. That's why denser bread is the way to go to make perfect paninis. Just make sure you grill your panini properly to achieve the best results.
How To Grill A Panini
A perfectly grilled panini requires cooking the sandwich at an optimal temperature and cooking time using an ideal cooking appliance. It's best to use a panini press because you can control how much pressure is applied to your sandwich. Preheat your press while you build your sandwich. Once you've placed your panini on the press, gently lower the lid onto your panini with your preferred amount of pressure and let it cook.
For smaller paninis with only a few ingredients, grilling at 375 degrees Fahrenheit for about 3 minutes should work. For larger paninis with layers of ingredients, grilling at 200 degrees Fahrenheit for around 10 minutes should do the job. Just be sure to stand by and monitor your panini as it cooks so none of your ingredients melt out of the sandwich. And if you'd like to make a flavorfully balanced panini, try one of our sweet and savory panini suggestions. Just be sure to use ½-inch thick bread.
Read the original article on Daily Meal.