Tag Archives: PANINI

PANINI DI SANT’ANTONIO….ROLLS FOR ST.ANTHONY’S DAY JUNE 13

On June 13 Catholics all over the world celebrate the Feast of St.Anthony of Padua, a Franciscan preacher from Portugal who preached and ministered to the poor all over Italy settling in the Nothern Italian city of Padua. The legends surrounding his goodness to the poor manifest themselves in the PANE DI SANT’ANTONIO meaning he feed the hungry symbolized by small loaves of bread. All over Italy various styles of Pane or Panini (the italian word for small bread or rolls) have various styles. Some are light a brioche flavored with sugar and rum, others are slightly sweet with anisette, some are simply a plain crusty loaf, and some have fennel seeds and black pepper in them. So…what’s in the picture above? The are my own version of St.Anthony’s Rolls, slightly sweet, made with lard, black pepper and topped with Fennel Seeds. It’s my personal omaggio to St.Anthony. The rolls are the perfect vehicle for a few thin slices of Mortadella. Let’s go into the kitchen and create these tasty rolls.

PANINI DI SANT’ANTONIO MAKES ABOUT 2 DOZEN 2 1/2 INCH ROLLS

1 PACKET DRY YEAST

1 1/2 TEASPOONS GRANULATED SUGAR

1 CUP TEPID WATER

1/4 CUP LARD

3 1/2 CUPS OF SIFTED ALL PURPOSE FLOUR OR TIPO 00 IMPORTED ITALIAN FLOUR

2 1/2 TEASPOONS KOSHER SALT

1 1/2 TEASPOOONS CRACKED BLACKED PEPPER

2 BEATEN EGGS PLUS 3 TBS WHOLE MILK, MIX ALL TOGETHER

2 TBS FENNEL SEEDS

OLIVE OIL

wHISK the yeast, water, sugar, salt together. Let this sit for 15 minutes and it will bubble and froth. Now Add the flour and mix until the dough starts to come away from the bowl. You can do this with an electric mixer or by hand. When you have a smooth dough turn it out onto a lightly floured work surface. Knead the dough for 5 minutes. Then press it out into a small rectangle and add 2 tbs of the lard, Fold the dough over the lard and knead until it’s disappeared and the dough it smooth again. Repeat what you just did until all the lard is used up. Then form a smooth ball , brush with olive oil , the brush the sides of a bowl placing the dough in it and cover with a kitchen towel. Keep in a warm spot until it doubles in size. Take at least one hour or more. When it’s doubled in side cut the dough into 24 equivalent sized pieces. Lay onto parchment paper covered tray and cover them for 20 minutes. Pre heat your oven to 400 Degrees F. Roll each ball of dough into a thick “snake” or rope and tie it in a knot. Lay them on parcement paper lined baking trays. When you’ve completed this brush each one with some of the egg wash AND sprinkle some Fennel Seeds on top. You decide how many you want on top. Place into the middle racks, not the bottom one. Bake for 10 minutes. Then rotate the pans and bake for another 8 minutes OR until the bottoms have a nice brown color and the tops are golden brown like in the picture. Here’s where recipes can fail, this is how my oven works. You may need more or less time, pay attention to your oven!!! Enjoy warm or at room temperature. Plain. or with Ricotta and Jam, or with Prosciutto or Mortadella. Or simply on their own. BUONA FESTA DI SANT’ANTONIO!!

PANINO OR PANINI? WHAT IS IT REALLY?

abatepanino 008  Sometimes a blog is just a random thought off the top of one’s head (actually, that’s what they REALLY are supposed to be) but now they are a mashup of those random thoughts and a well documented or researched website with nice pictures.  This blog post really is a random thought I had while putting together my dinner which was that sandwich you see above.  Hero?  sure. Sub? whatever. It’s a sandwich but hey, I love to get caught up in the “Italian” of it all and I actually (now you’ll hear my inner voice) call it a PANINO.  Sound familiar?  I’m sure you’ve had a PANINI right? That hot pressed sandwich that turned into a new food style and industry in the United States..supposedly just like they make them in Italy?  Well that’s only partly true.  There’s a difference between the PANINO of Italy and the PANINI marketed in the United States.  First of all to be most correct, PANINI is just the plural of the Italian word for roll (small bread, bread in Italian is PANE, drop the E add the INO which means LITTLE and we have PANINO). There are many types of Panino breads in Italy, mostly round, or they will use a Bastone cut into pieces but it’s simply a sandwich.  Most are served at room temperature and there are some hot pressed versions.  There is generally a lot less in terms of cheeses and ingredients on the Italian versions.  European sandwiches are never the staggering jaw breaking size of our supersized monsters.  I remember seeing my first European sandwich in France and though..how cheap is this place??? There’s hardly anything in there!!  Well I got used to it and when in Europe eat European.  At home here in the States I like more American style but truth be told I hate anything that’s too big.  So am I going to give you are recipe for a PANINO? Not at all.  Just some info on how a more Italian PANINO is made.  A few layers of sliced meats, some cheese, a dressing of some sort that can be as simple as Extra Virgin Olive Oil or some Lardo, or Mayo and maybe some tomato or onion or greens, but manageable.  The single most important part of the more Italian PANINO is the bread…as we say, “Always get the Good Bread”.  That means a sturdy Italian or Artisanal bread baked properly, not mush.IMG_5407  How’s that for “GOOD BREAD”???  Those loaves are a sampling of what I mean by a good piece of bread baked by Melone Brothers Bakery in Staten Island. The “CONDIMENTO” I made for tonight’s PANINO could not be more simple.  In a bowl mix 1/4 cup Extra Virgin Olive Oil, 1/2 tsp Kosher salt, 6 finely chopped basil leaves, 1 large well minced clove of garlic, pinch of Peperoncino, pinch of oregano.  Then add  2 pints of sliced Grape or Cherry tomatoes in quarters.  Mix.  Let this sit for 3 hours at room temp. (covered of course).  When making you PANINO drizzle some of that oil on both sides of the bread, then layer with sliced cured Italian meats, no more than 2 layers, and add some fresh mozzarella slices or sliced Sharp Italian imported Provolone and over that add some of the tomatoes and more of the dressing.  This should make about 3-4 PANINI.  No heating. No pressing. Just a sandwich with a load of flavor and kick.

You can add 1 tsp of vinegar to the mix too but I don’t care for the vinegar used when you are making a PANINO with fresh mozzarella.  It’s one of those Italian rules that Americans break all the time.  I’m with the Italians on that one.

abatepanino 007