Saturday, September 8, 2012

End of Summer Panzanella

As summer ends, sadly, so do my tomatoes.
Like they are right on cue, my tomato vines are 
slowly shriveling up, giving up the last of their jewels.
Yes, I have enough for one last dish...
Grilled Sourdough Panzanella
This is a terrific tasting bread salad and the bread is grilled for
extra flavor.  I used a mixture of tomatoes: my pineapple and green zebra 
heirloom tomatoes along with some store bought, 
vine-ripened cocktail tomatoes.  The cocktail 
tomatoes are larger than cherry/grape tomatoes
but smaller than regular tomatoes and they are still on their vine.
I varied their cut sizes to make it more interesting.
I cut a few in wedges, a few in halves, and a few quartered.
The vinaigrette is a bit tangy and the capers are 
a nice addition.  I decided not to add the mint.  
This salad is best served right away.

Grilled Sourdough Panzanella
Source: Fine Cooking
Serve 4 to 6 - Yields about 6 cups.

4-1/2-inch-thick slices (about 8 oz.) from the center of a round 
     sourdough loaf (a boule)
1/2 cup extra-virgin olive oil (divided)
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
1 small shallot, sliced into thin rings
3 Tbsp. red wine vinegar
1 small clove garlic, coarsely chopped
1-1/2 lb. ripe, meaty tomatoes, cut into 1/2-inch dice (about 3-1/2 cups)
1 small English cucumber, seeded and cut into 1/2-inch dice (about 1-1/2 cups)
3 Tbsp. chopped fresh basil
3 Tbsp. chopped fresh mint
2 Tbsp. capers, drained and rinsed

     Heat a gas grill with all burners on medium.  Brush the bread with 1/4 cup of the oil and season it with 1/4 tsp. kosher salt and a few grinds of pepper.  Grill the bread on both sides, checking frequently, until nicely browned, 3 to 4 minutes per side.  When the bread is cool enough to handle, cut it into 1/2-inch cubes.

     In a small bowl, soak the shallot in the vinegar for 10 minutes.  With a slotted spoon, transfer the shallot to a large bowl, reserving the vinegar.  Sprinkle the garlic with 1/4 tsp. kosher salt and mash it to a paste on a cutting board with the side of a chef's knife.  Whisk the mashed garlic, the remaining 1/4 cup olive oil, 1/4 tsp. kosher salt, and 1/8 tsp. pepper into the reserved vinegar.

     Toss the bread cubes, tomatoes, cucumber, basil, mint, capers, and vinaigrette in the bowl with the shallot.  Season the panzanella to taste with kosher salt and pepper and serve. 

Wishing all of you a happy ending to summer!

I will be linking up this week with


Thanks for stopping by!

~ Karen

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