S’mores go uptown. You can make these crisp and gooey dessert sandwiches with any kind of bread as long as it’s fairly sturdy and sliceable. I like to keep it simple with Italian peasant bread, crusty on the outside with a chewy, open crumb on the inside; baguettes cut at a slight angle are nice, too. For the chocolate, choose what you like to eat, which for me is bittersweet. Serve with a scoop of ice cream if you like.
4 large or 8 small slices bread (½ to ¾ inch thick)
8 ounces chocolate, chopped
2 tablespoons butter, softened
1 tablespoon sugar
1. If using a gas grill, heat it for medium direct cooking. If using a charcoal grill, after taking off dinner, add more coals if necessary and close the lid until ready to cook. In either case, clean the grates.
2. Put half of the bread slices on a baking sheet. Divide the chocolate evenly on top, spreading almost to the edges. Top with the remaining bread. Spread both sides of each sandwich with the butter; sprinkle with the sugar. (You can do this earlier in the day if you like; wrap the panini in plastic to keep the bread from drying out.)
3. Put the panini on the grill directly over the fire. Close the lid and cook, turning once, until the bread develops grill marks and the chocolate has melted, 2 to 4 minutes per side. Transfer to a plate. Let cool for a minute or 2; cut large sandwiches in halves, quarters, or sticks if you like and serve.
Chocolate-Almond or Other Nut Panini: Before adding the chocolate, spread the bread with almond butter or other nut butter. You’ll need 1⁄4 to 1⁄3 cup.
Chocolate-Strawberry Panini: Put a layer of strawberry slices over the chocolate before topping with the bread. Depending on the size of your bread slices and the size of the berries, you’ll need 1 to 2 strawberries per sandwich.
Peanut Butter, Banana, and Chocolate Panini: Ooey gooey good: Spread creamy or crunchy peanut butter on the bread before adding the chocolate; you’ll need ¼ to ⅓ cup. Then put a layer of thinly sliced banana over the chocolate before topping with the bread. One large banana is usually enough.