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Panzanella

by Susan Hanna

This classic bread and tomato salad from Ina Garten serves a crowd and is a great way to use up late-summer produce. Sauté bread cubes in olive oil until browned. Combine tomatoes, cucumber, red and yellow peppers, red onion, basil and capers in a bowl. Add the toasted bread cubes and toss with vinaigrette. Let stand for a half hour before serving to allow the flavours to blend.

Avoiding Additives and Preservatives

 I used President’s Choice Old-Fashioned Dijon, Eden Organic red wine vinegar and Unico capers—all are additive-free. I used Ace Bakery bread, which typically does not contain artificial ingredients. For more recipes using all-natural ingredients, visit Eye For a Recipe.

Ingredients:

Vinaigrette

1 teaspoon (5 ml) finely minced garlic

½ teaspoon (2.5 ml) Dijon mustard

3 tablespoons (45 ml) Champagne or red wine vinegar

½ cup (125 ml) good olive oil

½ teaspoon (2.5 ml) kosher salt

¼ teaspoon (1.25 ml) freshly ground black pepper

Salad

3 tablespoons (45 ml) good olive oil

1 small French bread or boule, cut into 1-inch (2.54-cm) cubes (6 cups/1.5 L)

1 teaspoon (5 ml) kosher salt

2 large, ripe tomatoes, cut into 1-inch (2.54-cm) cubes

1 hothouse cucumber, unpeeled, seeded, and sliced ½-inch (1.25-cm) thick

1 red bell pepper, seeded and cut into 1-inch (2.54-cm) cubes

1 yellow bell pepper, seeded and cut into 1-inch (2.54-cm) cubes

½ red onion, cut in half and thinly sliced

20 large basil leaves, coarsely chopped

3 tablespoons (45 ml) capers, drained

Preparation:

Heat the oil in a large sauté pan. Add the bread and salt; cook over low to medium heat, tossing frequently, for 10 minutes, or until nicely browned. Add more oil as needed.

For the vinaigrette, whisk all the ingredients together.

In a large bowl, mix the tomatoes, cucumber, red pepper, yellow pepper, red onion, basil and capers. Add the bread cubes and toss with the vinaigrette. Season liberally with salt and pepper. Serve, or allow the salad to sit for about half an hour for the flavours to blend. Serves 12.

From Ina Garten

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