Panzanella – Italian Bread Salad
Panzanella is a simple recipe with bread and tomatoes and very popular in the Tuscan region of Italy. Every culture around the world has ideas and means to salvage old, leftover food and ingredients. This is Italy’s answer to use old stale bread in an innovative way and make it delicious.
Usually this recipe is made with leftover bread as it is dry and perfect as a salad with dressing. Old or stale bread is used as it soaks up the juice of the tomatoes and the dressing and makes for perfect pairing. Use red juicy and ripe tomatoes for this recipe and the ingredients kept at room temperature. You can also add thinly sliced red onions to the salad but I skipped it.
This recipe is good for a crowd as it takes just a few minutes to assemble and serve. My family loves bread so we love this salad anytime.
- 2 cups tomato, cubed
- 3 cups hearty bread cubed, I used sourdough
- ½ cup cucumber, optional
- ½ cup fresh mozzarella, cubed
- For the dressing:
- 1 clove of garlic, finely chopped
- 2-3 tbsp red wine vinegar
- 3 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
- Salt to taste
- ¼ tsp pepper powder
- 2-3 tsp Italian dried herb mix- basil, marjoram, rosemary and oregano
- Fresh basil for serving
Add tomato, bread, cucumber and cheese in a big bowl.
Add the dressing ingredients in a bottle and whisk or shake well so they are combined thoroughly.
Pour the dressing to the bowl and mix well. Let the salad soak the dressing for 30 minutes before serving. Garnish with fresh basil leaves and serve at room temperature.
The famous proverb "you are what you eat” as quoted by the French author Anthelme Brillat-Savarin is very true. Food nourishes you from the inside out. Good health is of utmost importance to me. Vegetarianism and Veganism are gaining immense popularity these days. Natural, organic, healthy and homemade is my mantra.
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