Panzanella with Cherry Tomatoes and Bell Peppers

If you’re not familiar, panzanella is an Italian bread salad that combines dried, crusty bread squares with fresh vegetables and a vinaigrette. It’s a genius idea for using up old bread, and extraordinarily delicious. You can use any fresh veggies you have on hand, but traditional ones are tomatoes, peppers, red onion, and sometime cucumber (though we did not use it here).

Photo by Henya B.
Adapted from acouplecooks.com

PREP TIME

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minutes

TOTAL TIME

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minutes

SERVINGS

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servings

PREP TIME

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minutes

TOTAL TIME

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minutes

SERVINGS

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servings

Adapted from acouplecooks.com

Ingredients

  • Crusty bread, cut into bite-size pieces (3 cups; substitute gluten-free bread if desired)

  • 1

    tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil

  • 1

    pint cherry tomatoes

  • 3

    bell peppers (one yellow, red, green)

  • 1/2

    red onion

  • 1

    garlic clove

  • 1

    tablespoon fresh basil leaves (chiffonade)

  • 1/3

    cup chopped almonds

  • 3

    tablespoons sherry vinegar

  • 3

    tablespoons olive oil

  • Kosher salt

  • Fresh ground pepper

Directions

1. Preheat an oven to 450F. 2. On a rimmed baking sheet, toss bread with 1 tablespoon olive oil and season with kosher salt and ground pepper. Spread the bread in a si.ngle layer and bake until golden brown, about 7 minutes. 3. Meanwhile, prepare the vegetables: wash the vegetables. Cut the cherry tomatoes in half. Dice the bell peppers. Thinly slice half red onion. Finely dice one clove garlic. Chiffonade enough for 1 tablespoon fresh basil leaves. Chop enough for ⅓ cup chopped almonds. 4. Make the dressing: in a small bowl or canning jar, combine remaining 3 tablespoons olive oil, 3 tablespoons sherry vinegar, and diced garlic. Season with kosher salt and pepper and whisk together (or shake jar vigorously). 5. In a large bowl, add together all components: chopped vegetables, dressing, almonds, basil, and toasted bread. (If making in advance, add toasted bread, basil, and almonds last to avoid becoming soggy.) Best eaten about 20 minutes after assembling. Leftovers are delicious, but bread will become soggy after a few hours.

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