Summer just isn’t the same without a few rounds of Panzanella, an Italian bread salad, hitting our dinner table. It is one of my favorite go-to recipes during the hot summer months, and it’s such a perfect way celebrate the flavors we enjoy most this time of year … big juicy red tomatoes, crisp cucumbers, fresh basil. It does everything but scream summer.
The Panzanella version that I usually go for is this Tyler Florence one from his Eat This Book cookbook, and it was especially perfect for tonight’s Summerfest 2010 round-up since this week’s magical ingredient is the pepper. Roasted red peppers are a unique (and delicious) addition to this salad, and it seems only fitting that we include this dish in our last full week of summer vacation. You know, for those of us that actually are on summer vacation (yes, I’m talking to you, Nick!).
For more pepper inspiration, do check in on what my fellow Summerfesters are serving up. And oh, in the meantime, good news! Because of the popularity of the Summerfest weekly round-up, there will be a Fall version getting underway on September 22nd (full details here).
Alison at Food2: Making Hot Pepper-Infused Vodka
Michelle at Cooking Channel: A Peck of Perfect Pepper Recipes
Nicole at Pinch My Salt: Pickled Serrano Peppers
Kirsten at the FN Dish: Chiles Rellenos and More Stuffed Peppers
Liz at Healthy Eats: 10 Ways To Eat Sweet Peppers
Margaret at A Way to Garden: Oven-roasted peppers, and freezing how-to
Caroline at The Wright Recipes: Homemade Harissa & Sweet and Spicy Peperonata
The Gilded Fork: Dossier and recipes on peppers spicy and sweet
Paige at The Sister Project: Grilled Tomatillo Salsa with Jalapenos
Caron at San Diego Foodstuff: Consuelo’s Hot Chile Sauce and Hatch Chiles
Alana at Eating from the Ground Up: Homemade hot sauce, and why gloves are a good idea
Food Network, UK: It’s Chili Weather
Recipe courtesy Tyler Florence’s cookbook, Eat This Book.
1 French boule, or loaf of round Tuscan bread, torn into bite-size pieces (I use a baguette)
Extra virgin olive oil
2 garlic cloves
3 anchovy fillets
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
Juice of 1/2 a lemon, or as needed
2 tablespoons red wine vinegar
1 tablespoon capers, drained
2 roasted red bell peppers, shredded by hand
1/2 pint red cherry tomatoes, halved
1/2 pint yellow cherry tomatoes, halved
1/2 red onion, finely chopped
1 seedless cucumber, peeled and cut into ½ inch cubes
1/2 bunch of basil, torn into largish pieces
1/4 cup celery leaves, torn into largish pieces
Preheat the oven to 400F. Toss the bread chunks with 1/4 cup oil until the bread is wet with the oil. Spread the bread on a baking sheet and back until the bread begins to brown, about 10 minutes. While the bread is going, make the dressing. Use a large knife to chop and mash the garlic, anchovies, and salt to a paste on a cutting board. Scrape it into a large mixing bowl, add the lemon juice, vinegar, oil, salt, pepper, and stir together. Add all of the rest of the ingredients and gently stir. Taste for seasoning. Finally, add the toasted bread and toss it all together. Taste it and season one last time with salt, pepper, and lemon juice.
Yield: 4 to 6 servings