I was asked to create a couple of my favorite Italian sandwiches or panini, and I recently posted my personal favorite which includes Mortadella, Asiago & Olive Spread, and decided to share my husband’s favorite as another option. My husband loves the combination of prosciutto, mozzarella cheese, tomatoes, and arugula all served on crusty bread and I honestly think he could eat this panini every day.
We have traveled to many regions across Italy and this panini can be found in each region, with slight variations from place to place. Although this sandwich is a very simple one, what takes it from being a merely good panini to a great one is ingredients you use.
We prefer this panini fresh without being heated, although you often do find this panini heated in a sandwich press. The following are the specific ingredients we like to use in this panini.
Prosciutto – We prefer Prosciutto di Parma, but if you cannot find it or find it too costly, use the best quality prosciutto you can find.
Mozzarella – My first choice would be Buffalo Mozzarella, but the next best option would be for a good quality fresh mozzarella. Avoid factory made slabs of mozzarella or the sliced version which have little flavor and can be rubbery.
Tomatoes – Use only very ripe, fresh, locally grown tomatoes for the best flavor.
Arugula – Any fresh arugula works well, but I like to use fresh baby arugula in this panini.
Bread – Any good quality crusty Italian bread or baguettes work well.
Extra Virgin Olive Oil – Choose a good quality fruity olive oil.
Coarse Sea Salt & Cracked Black Pepper
Fresh Basil Leaves
- 8 Slices Crusty Bread Cut Less Than 1/2 Inch Thick
- 4 Slices Ripe, fresh Tomatoes
- 8 Slices Prosciutto
- 4 slices Fresh Mozzarella
- 8 Fresh Basil Leaves
- Extra Virgin Olive Oil
- Sea Salt & Cracked Black Pepper
- On four slices of bread, place four tomatoes on each and sprinkle the tomatoes with salt and pepper.
- Place the fresh basil leaves on top of the tomatoes.
- Place a slice of mozzarella on top of each tomato, then arrange the prosciutto on top.
- Arrange some of the arugula on each panini and then drizzle with some of the extra virgin olive oil.
- Top each panini with the extra bread slices and serve.