Monday, August 4, 2014

Panzanella... A Great Summer Salad

What is Panzanella you may ask... it is a Tuscan salad of bread and tomatoes. I imagine it was originally created because Italian cooks are known to not waste a single clove of garlic or a sprig of parsley, Panzanella Salad is a great way to utilize stale bread and ripe garden tomatoes.

My suggestion, make Panzanella soon! 
With all the tomatoes and basil around, it’s definitely a summertime dish!

Start with some ripe tomatoes, a cucumber, red onion, crusty bread, olive oil, and vinegar.  

Just cut the tomatoes into wedges…And throw them into a bowl.
Halve and seed the cucumber, then slice it up…And throw them into a bowl.
Slice a red onion thin…And throw them into a bowl.

Next, cube the stale bread... And throw in the bowl.

Whip up a quick vinaigrette: 1/4 cup olive oil, 1-2 tablespoon balsamic vinegar, salt and pepper. Whisk. (you can use a red wine vinegar if you prefer.)

Now drizzle the dressing over the top!
And Toss!

Now, this is the hard part: You must dig down deep and summon up the patience to wait at least an hour to eat. It will be tough. And you might hear it calling out to you. But the salad needs to bath a bit in order for the tomatoes to give off a their juices and the bread to soak up all the yummy goodness.

Note! The bread will not get soggy. Using a cabatta when stale — never gets soggy, it just gets moistened by the amazing dressing and the juices from the tomatoes.

Here is the easy to follow recipe:

    •    1 loaf Very Crusty Bread (I used chabatta), best if it a day or two old*

    •    1 whole Cucumber, Halved, Seeded And Sliced
    •    4 whole Tomatoes, Cut Into Wedges
    •    1/2 Red Onion, Sliced Thinly
    •    1/4 cup Olive Oil
    •    1-2 Tablespoon Balsamic Vinegar
    •    Salt And Pepper
    •    4 whole Basil Leaves, Chiffonade (more To Taste)
    •    Olive Oil, For Drizzling if needed

  1. Cut the stale bread into 1-inch cubes.
  2. In a large bowl, combine tomatoes, cucumber, onion, and bread
  3. In a small jar, shake together the olive oil, vinegar, salt and pepper. 
  4. Pour over the salad ingredients, tossing gently. 
  5. Add basil and toss again. 
  6. Cover and allow to sit at room temperature for an hour or two before serving.
  7. Sprinkle with more salt and pepper and serve.

* If you don't have stale bread, fear not, you can drizzle fresh bread (cubed) with olive oil, then bake in a slow oven (275ยบ) till crispy (about 20-25 min)


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  1. Leave out the onions and give it 30 minutes and I would eat it. Gosh must be hard to wait an hour!! looks so yummmmmmmmm!!

  2. Thanks for sharing this awesome recipe at #inspirationmonday! Pinning :)