How to make a classic Panzanella salad

There is no better or sexier Italian salad than the Panzanella. A Tuscan salad rustled up primarily of two key ingredients; juicy ripe red tomatoes and stale bread or baked bread chunks as I like to use in this recipe. There are many versions out there on the old internet, but I prefer to keep it classic with just the addition of thinly sliced red onion, fresh basil and a generous drizzle of EVO.

Panzanella is one of those salads that represents sunnier times for me. Eating this salad is like having sunshine hit your face on a summers day. It makes me happy. Perfect as a light lunch on its own or served alongside pan-fried chicken, fish or meat.

Panzanella salad

Panzanella salad (3-4 years)

  • 1 small ciabatta,
  • 1 red onion, thinly sliced
  • Sea Salt
  • 6 large tomatoes on the vine
  • Extra virgin olive oil
  • Red wine vinegar
  • Handful fresh basil leaves, roughly chopped

Panzanella salad

  • Pre-heat oven to 200c
  • Cut the ciabatta into equal-sized croutons. Place them on a baking tray. Drizzle over with olive oil and season with salt. Bake in the oven for 10 minutes
  • Place the sliced onion in a bowl and season with a couple of teaspoons of salt. The salt releases the acidity of the onion. Let it sit for at least 15 minutes.
  • In the meantime, slice each tomato into eighths. Add them to the onions, add the basil, drizzle with 4 tbsp of olive oil, 1 tbsp red wine vinegar. Mix the ingredients well together.
  • Five minutes before serving the salad, add the croutons and stir through again. Serve with more fresh basil.