spring is here with new grass for my front yard and temps in the humid mid to upper eighties and I made something both old and new. Z doesn’t really like tomatoes or soggy bread so panzanella hasn’t really been on my radar since we got married. Last night I bucked the trend and made it anyhow. It is panzanella my style and is a few tweaks from classic.
- demi loaf of crusty bread – in this case jalapeno cheddar cut into 1″ slices
- vine-ripe tomatoes cut into bite size chunks – deseeded
- english cucumber cut into bite size chunks
- red onion half moons thinly sliced
- olive oil
- red wine vinegar
- salt & freshly ground pepper
Slice your bread and lightly butter – toast in grill pan or panini maker – let cool slightly and tear into bite size chunks.
While your bread toasts toss the cucumber, tomatoes and onions together in a large bowl. Dress to taste with vinegar and olive oil. Add bread and toss one more time. Serve with a generous grind of pepper and a sprinkle of salt.
So, what’s different from traditional panzanella? The bread – instead of stale bread soaked in water I use fresh high quality bread and butter and toast it to give it a warming bite. When it picks up the oil, vinegar, juices running from the vegetables it takes on a style all it’s own.
On another note, Z plated everything but the tomatoes (he took one I think) and filled up on chicken and strawberries. As for me? Loved every bite.