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Panzanella

Introduce an Italian twist to this season’s summer salads with a traditional Tuscan Panzanella dish. A classic recipe to use up fresh ripe tomatoes with chunks of bread, all soaked in balsamic vinegar; this salad is perfect to serve at any up-and-coming garden parties or as a gourmet side dish at a BBQ – whilst also being a tasty vegetarian option!

A simple dish to experiment with ingredients and flavours to suite your own tastes, this Panzanella recipe is taken from the foodie photography blog ‘What Katie Ate‘ and promises to become a light and healthy favourite for easy home cooking. Fusing plum tomatoes with a crispy day-old sourdough loaf, red peppers, roughly torn buffalo mozzarella and scatterings of basil leaves, this dish is finished with lashings of balsamic vinegar for added zest.

 Ingredients 

– 8 roma/plum tomatoes, halved lengthways

– Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper

– Olive oil, for cooking

– 1 small-medium day-old sourdough loaf, torn into bite-sizes pieces

– 3 red peppers

– 1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil

– 220g fresh buffalo mozzarella, roughly torn

– 1 tablespoon salted capers, rinsed

– 1 bunch basil leaves picked

– Balsamic vinegar dressing

– 3 tablespo0ns extra virgin olive oil

– 1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar

– Sea salt & freshly ground black pepper

 Method

– Preheat the oven to 130°C fan-forced

– Place the tomato halves on a baking tray, season lightly with salt & pepper and drizzle over a little olive oil. Transfer to the oven and roast for two hours or until very soft and lightly caramelised. After 1 hour spread the pieces of bread on a separate baking tray, drizzle lightly with olive oil and add them to the oven with the tomatoes for the last 30 mins of cooking time, until they are light golden brown and crispy. Transfer the bread to a large bowl and leave the tomatoes to cool.

– Meanwhile, using tongs, hold the peppers over a naked gas flame on your stovetop, rotating occasionally until the skins are charred all over. Place the peppers in a large bowl, cover with plastic film and set aside until cool enough to handle, then remove the charred skin. Cut away the core and white inner membrane and discard the seeds, then cut the flesh into thin strips. Place in a small bowl with 1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil, massaging the oil into the flesh and set aside.

– To make the dressing, whisk all the ingredients together in a small bowl. Pour the dressing over the roasted bread chunks and toss to coat well, then remove the bread with a slotted spoon and transfer to a serving platter, reserving the dressing.

– Add the roasted tomato halves, pepper strips (drained of oil) mozzarella, capers and basil to the platter. Drizzle over the dressing, toss to combine well, then season with salt and pepper before serving.

Enjoy!

www.julesb.co.uk | @JulesBOnline

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