Posts Tagged ‘red onion’

There is nothing like a blog post a-la-minute!  We are literally waiting to dig in and gobble up this de-lish salad as soon as I snap a shot.  Rosemary infused grilled lamb chops, summer corn saute and Tuscan Panzanella Salad all served “al fresco” on the patio for dinner tonight.  A great bottle of Pinot, candlelight and a cute hubby to dine with to-boot.  LISVG. (Thanks to JoJo for that acronym).

Panzanella salad is a bread and tomato salad originating in Italy.  The Tuscans don’t like to waste even a morsel or crumb of good bread, so this wonderful rustic salad was created centuries ago to use up all the day-old bread sitting around the villa.  There are loads of panzanella salad recipes floating around.  The basic approach is to get some great in-season summer vegetables (must include LOTS of tomatoes), make some homemade grilled croutons from the leftover bread and douse all with a simple vinaigrette.  Although I did not do it this evening – you can always add cheese and olives too – it’s a salad for heaven’s sake.

It’s really impossible to describe what happens when you pop a forkful of the homemade croutons and tomatoes soaked in the vinaigrette into your mouth.  I’ll just have to let you experience that yourself.

Tuscan Panzanella Salad


1 loaf rustic sourdough bread, rough cut into 1 inch cubes (about 6 cups)

2 TBSP butter

2 TBSP olive oil

salt to taste

2 bell peppers (red, yellow or orange) stems and seeds removed, cut into one inch pieces

1 small red onion, large dice (about 1/2 cup)

1 large cucumber, seeds scooped out and cut in one inch pieces

1 pint sweet, firm tomatoes, cut in bite size pieces

6-8 large basil leaves, chopped


2 cloves fresh minced garlic

1 tsp Dijon mustard

1/4 red wine vinegar

1/2 cup olive oil

salt and pepper to taste


Start with a loaf of rustic sourdough bread.

Rough cut it into one inch cubes

Melt 2 TBSP butter and 2 TBSP olive oil in a saute pan.  Add the bread cubes.  Salt to taste.  Saute over medium-low heat for about 5-10 minutes until cubes are toasty and brown.

  If you start nabbing a bite to taste – be sure to leave some for the salad!

I like the way it looks to leave a little skin on the cucumber.  I just took a vegetable peeler and peeled off every other row.

Chop the vegetables and basil, whisk together all the ingredients in the vinaigrette, throw everything in a big bowl with the home made croutons and pour the vinaigrette over all.  Enjoy!!


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