Panzanella Salad w/ Tomato Vinaigrette

It's tomato season once again! Time for panzanella salad.

A stale bread and tomato salad.

I love my original recipe, using the usual suspects, and the addition of olives and balsamic's always a hit.

While at cooking school in Italy last month, we learned how to make this simple salad into a game changer by making a vinaigrette using tomatoes whizzed in the food processor.

Tomatoes and tomatoes. Makes perfect sense to me.

I also learned how to make the perfect focaccia (we baked 2 per day) my croutons were extra good, since they were made with leftover toasted rosemary and onion focaccia cubes.

Win win.

Jake Simpson the chef instructor, uses metric measurements since he is from the UK, but you can figure it out.....I never measure....especially with salads.

Just use this recipe as a guideline. Salads are very forgiving.

Jake's Panzanella: (adapted from Jake Simpson/Stirred Travel)

1/2 loaf of stale bread, crusts removed and torn into chunks
1/2 red onion, sliced thin
2 large ripe tomatoes, roughly chopped
handful of arugula
1/2 cucumber, peeled and seeded, and sliced into half moons
handful of fresh basil leaves
1 tbsp capers, roughly chopped
olives (optional)

1 tomato
1 garlic clove
80 ml good quality olive oil
30 ml red wine vinegar
sea salt & pepper
a handful of fresh basil leaves

Whiz dressing ingredients in a mini chopper and leave at room temperature until ready to dress salad.
Taste and adjust seasonings.

Mix the bread cubes with olive oil and toast in a toaster oven till crisp on the outside, but still soft on the inside.

Mix all the salad ingredients in a large bowl. You can refrigerate (don't mix) until ready to serve.

Just before serving, add in the bread cubes and pour on the dressing (you don't have to use all of it).

Toss everything until coated with dressing and plate.



Natalia said…
Looks yummy - can't wait to try it!

I'd also love to go on a cooking vacation like you did. Looks like an amazing way to learn how to make different foods while having fun.
I was thinking of Samin Nosrat when I first saw your recipe since she also had a some panzanella recipes in her book and a tomato vinaigrette. I do need to try doing a tomato dressing when the local tomatoes are a bit better. I can’t imagine there are many salads a tomato dressing wouldn’t be good on.
Anonymous said…
Please share your focaccia recipe with us. I bet it's just amazing.
Stacey Snacks said…

The focaccia recipe is almost the same as the Jim Lahey no knead focaccia recipe I have posted on the blog....

the only difference is that we used Italian 00 flour while in Italy, vs. bread flour in Lahye's recipe. We also used FRESH yeast (refrigerated from a brick) in the recipe i have posted, you use a packet of instant yeast, but basically ingredients are the same.

Depending on the weather (humidity and elevation plays a factor), my focaccia baked here in NJ when I got home from Italy took 24 hours to fully proof and double in size.
Stacey Snacks said…
To clarify my jumbled comment:

Instead of bread flour in Jim Lahey's recipe, use 4 cups of 00 Italian flour (you can find it on amazon).
Also instead of "fresh" yeast, I used 1 packet (2 tsp) of Fleischmann's active rise yeast.

380ml water.
Mix together with some olive oil and cover tightly. In 8 hours, you will have a bowl of nice bubbly yeasty stuff, doubled in size.
Do your second fold over with olive oil. And proof another 4 hours or more.....overnight is good.
Look at my instagram, I have more instructions there. It's pretty simple, and hard to mess up. ;)