- In a small bowl, combine 1/4 cup of the water and the yeast and let stand until frothy, 5 minutes.
- In a large bowl, stir together the flour and salt, and make a well in the center.
- When the yeast has proofed, pour it into the well along with the remaining 1 1/4 cups water, the honey, and the oil.
- Using a plastic scraper, gradually pull the flour into the wet ingredients, folding to mix, until a soft dough forms.
- Then knead the dough in the bowl for 5 minutes, by folding the dough over itself while you turn the bowl.
- Scrape the dough out onto a board. Wash and dry the bowl. Smear the bottom of the bowl with olive oil.
- Scrape up the dough with the plastic scraper and return it to the bowl.
- Turn the dough in the bowl to coat with the oil. Cover with an oiled sheet of plastic wrap.
- Let stand in a warm place (at least 70°F) about 1 1/2 hours, or until the volume increases by 1 1/2 to 2 times.
- Line two baking sheets with parchment paper or nonstick silicone baking mats; set aside.
- Sprinkle a work surface generously with semolina flour so that it covers an area about 4 inches by 25 inches.
- Place the dough on top of the semolina and stretch it out to about 4 inches wide and 1/2 inch thick, to cover the semolina.
- If the dough gives you trouble stretching, let it relax for 20 minutes and try again. Sprinkle the top of the dough with more semolina flour.
- Using a ruler and a pastry cutter, cut the dough into pieces 4 inches long by 1/2 inch wide.
- Holding one end of a piece of dough in each hand, stretch it out to the length of the baking sheet by twirling it gently.
- Place on a prepared baking sheet. Repeat to form all of the breadsticks.
- Cover with plastic wrap and let rise in a warm place until soft and puffy, about 20 minutes.
- Set an oven rack in the middle position. Preheat the oven to 325°F.
- Bake one sheet at a time, rotating the sheet two-thirds of the way through, until the breadsticks are dry and crisp—around 12 to 15 minutes.
- Transfer to wire rack to cool.
For a slightly different flavor, try any of the options below.
- Tomato Grissini: Stir and dissolve 1 1/2 tablespoons of tomato paste into the cup of water in step 2 before adding to the flour combination.
- Herb Grissini: Add 1 1/2 tablespoons of any favorite chopped herbs to the flour and salt in step 2 before adding the wet ingredients.
- Black Pepper Grissini: Add 1 1/2 teaspoons freshly ground black pepper to the flour and salt in step 2 before adding the wet ingredients.