Panzanella - A Classic Italian Bread Salad
A traditional Italian salad with a tangy tomato juice, olive oil, red wine vinegar dressing soaked up by the roasted colored peppers, tomatoes, anchovies, capers and toasted ciabatta.
- 8 oz. ciabatta or rustic Italian loaves such as that found in Tuscany and Abruzzi.
- 2/3 cup olive oil
- 3 red bell peppers
- 3 yellow bell peppers
- 2 oz. can anchovies
- 2 lbs. ripe plum tomatoes
- 4 garlic cloves minced
- 4 Tablespoons red wine vinegar
- 2 oz. capers
- 1 cup pitted Kalamata olives - halved
- Basil leaves for adding to salad and garnish
- Salt and freshly ground black pepper.
Cut the ciabatta into 3/4 inch chunks and drizzle with 1/4 cup of the olive oil. Broil the bread lightly until the cubes are a golden brown.
Preheat the oven to 400F. Put the peppers on a foil-lined baking sheet and bake for about 45 minutes - unti the skin begins to char. Remove from the oven, transfer to a large bowl, cover with a plate and leave until the peppers are cool enough to handle.
When the peppers are cool, peel off the skins, discard the stalk ends and seeds then cut the peppers in 1 inch pieces.
Drain, then coarsely chop the anchovies. Set aside.
To make the tomato dressing, peel and halve the tomatoes. Scoop the seeds into a strainer set over a bowl.
Press the tomato pulp in the strainer to extract the juice. Discard the pulp and add the remaining oil, the garlic, vinegar and seasoning to the juice.
In a large bowl, layer the toasted bread, peppers, tomatoes, anchovies, capers, ending with olives.
Pour the dressing over and let stand for about 30 minutes. When ready to serve, mix the ingredients then top with plenty of basil leaves.
- The salad can be assembled ahead of time -- we have even done it the night before keeping the salad in the refrigerator. Let the salad come to room temperature then pour the dressing over the salad 30 minutes before serving. Top with basil leaves.
Serving: 10g | Calories: 326kcal | Carbohydrates: 20g | Protein: 5g | Fat: 25g | Saturated Fat: 6g | Cholesterol: 4mg | Sodium: 666mg | Potassium: 456mg | Fiber: 3g | Sugar: 11g | Vitamin A: 2005IU | Vitamin C: 124.2mg | Calcium: 40mg | Iron: 1.6mg