Thursday, May 24, 2012

our food: bread salad recipe

Samuel had a homework assignment the other day where he had to ask me a bunch of questions about myself.  One of the questions asked what my favorite food was.  I wanted to answer, "Whatever food I didn't have to make myself."  That would have take up too much space on the little line provided so I told him something else.  But, really, I love it when people make food for me.  It's the way to my heart :).

So the first time I had panzanella, my friend made it for me.  So, I loved it.  And just to make sure that it wasn't just the good-because-someone-made-it-for-me spice, I made some for myself.  Still good. 

We have to store our bread in the fridge here or it gets moldy super duper fast.  After it has been in the fridge, it doesn't taste so great unless we toast it or heat it.  We had a leftover loaf of rosemary bread from the Costco two pack in our fridge.  

Panzenella, Italian bread salad, to the rescue.  I am not an Italian food expert.  And I am sure this is not authentic, just like my bean salsa is not actually salsa.  
Karl and Samuel set the table it looked so pretty.  Love the way that Samuel is lining up the sauces.  My friend let me have tomatoes and basil from her garden and that made this extra special.  She grew them in a Topsy Turvy and that makes is extra extra extra special.  I love As Seen on Tv stuff. Nerd alert, I know.


1 loaf crusty bread, cubed
3 T. olive oil
1 c diced tomatoes or cherry or grape tomatoes halved
1 english or Japanese cucumber, cubed 
1/4 c basil, cut into thin strips
1/2 t. salt
1/4 c capers
1/4 c grated parmesan cheese
2 T. balsamic vinegar

Mix the tomatoes, cucumber, basil, salt, capers, and balsamic vinegar in a bowl.  Heat olive oil in a large frying pan.  Add bread.  Lightly brown one side and then turn over and brown other side.  Add more oil if needed.  I had to to this in two batches.  Toss with tomato mixture.

I added garbanzo beans and a can of tuna for more protein and a can of olives to make it a heavier main dish.  I also set the bread out separately because one of my kids has anti-soggy food issues and this is an easy solution. Fresh mozzarella cubes, bell peppers, or onions would also be good.

I love the crunchy, salty, chewy of this dish. I served it with artichokes and it turned out to be a great meal.  And I thought of my friend that first made it for me several times while making it.  Yet another reason why I love food that other people make for me. 


pamela said...

this looks amazing, but ambitious - was it ambitious?

Christina said...

I would not consider this an ambitious meal at all. It was actually pretty simple. The hardest part was not eating all the bread cubes as I fried them up. There is a special place in my heart for deep fried bread.

jamie parker said...

Oh Yum! We will be making this at our house:) xo


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