This is truly one of my new favorite things.  How brilliant--grilled crusty bread in salad--just perfect for all those who like a little lettuce with their croutons. Hmmm...or is this how croutons came to be?...but crouton is a French word, non?...I digress. So, you can't mess up Panzanella, unless you burn the bread, I suppose. I added mozzarella to mine, and Ina likes capers in hers, but no matter how you toss it up, these are the main ingredients:

  • Crusty bread brushed with olive oil, sliced 1/2 inch thick, grilled, then cut into cubes
  • Coarsely chopped ripe tomatoes
  • Coarsely chopped cucumbers
  • Coarsely torn basil Drizzle of olive oil
  • Drizzle of red wine vinegar
  • Coarse salt and pepper

*Update: I now toss my veggies with olive oil and vinegar first, adjust salt and pepper for taste, and then add bread at the end and toss. I like my salad to be moist and vinegar-y, so I usually use two parts red wine vinegar to one part olive oil. The cucumbers and tomatoes should be sitting in some dressing when you toss in the bread--the bread will soak up the excess dressing!

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Simply delicious, and efficient too, taking care of bread and salad in one big bowl! Perfect for the grilling season that's around the corner.

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