Panzanella Toscana

Panzanella Toscana

Originating from Tuscany, Panzanella Toscana is an Italian bread salad. This salad combines stale bread, ripe tomatoes, onions, and basil, dressed in extra virgin olive oil and a hint of vinegar. This salad is perfect for warm-weather gatherings and takes only 15 minutes to make.

Type: salad

Cuisine: Italians

Keywords: salad, summer, italian, panzanella, panzanella toscana,

Recipe Yield: 2

Calories: 549

Preparation Time: 15

Total Time: 15

Recipe Video Name: Panzanella Toscana

Recipe Video Description: Originating from Tuscany, Panzanella Toscana is an Italian bread salad. This salad combines stale bread, ripe tomatoes, onions, and basil, dressed in extra virgin olive oil and a hint of vinegar. This salad is perfect for warm-weather gatherings and takes only 15 minutes to make.

Recipe Ingredients:

  • 200 grams / 7 oz stale Tuscan bread (or ciabatta or baguette)
  • 450 grams / 1 lb. pound ripe tomatoes
  • 1 small red onion
  • 1 bunch of fresh basil leaves
  • 7 tbsp (100 ml) water
  • 7 tbsp (100 ml) red wine vinegar
  • 1 1/2 tbsp (22 ml) extra virgin olive oil
  • salt and pepper to taste

Recipe Instructions: In a large mixing bowl, combine vinegar and water. Mix well to combine. Cut the bread into thick cubes. I recommended cutting the bread into smaller pieces to allow for faster soaking. Add the bread cubes into the bowl with the vinegar and water mixture. Use a spoon to help immerse the bread and ensure it is well-soaked. Cut the tomatoes into halves or quarters if using cherry tomatoes or into chunks or cubes if using regular tomatoes. Slice the onions and place them, along with the tomatoes, in a separate mixing bowl. Drain and gently squeeze the bread with your hands to remove excess moisture. Crumble the bread into the bowl with the onions and tomatoes. Season the mixture with salt and pepper, then add extra virgin olive oil and fresh basil. Mix everything well to combine all the ingredients. Cover the bowl and allow the Panzanella Toscana to rest in the fridge for at least 20 minutes before serving. This resting period allows the flavors to meld together. Just before serving, give the salad a toss. Serve the Panzanella Toscana and garnish with additional fresh basil leaves, if desired. Serve at room temperature.

Editor's Rating:
5

Originating from Tuscany, Panzanella Toscana is an Italian bread salad. This salad combines stale bread, ripe tomatoes, onions, and basil, dressed in extra virgin olive oil and a hint of vinegar. This salad is perfect for warm-weather gatherings and takes only 15 minutes to make. 

⭐️ Why You Should Try This Recipe

  • This recipe is an easy way to use stale bread in a flavorful salad, avoiding waste.
  • Customize the salad with extra vegetables or ingredients of your choice.
  • Summer is the perfect time for quick, simple, and time-saving recipes.
  • Enjoy a refreshing and light option for summer gatherings.
  • This salad is budget-friendly, using stale bread and only a few other simple ingredients.

πŸ… What is Panzanella Toscana made of?

Panzanella is a traditional Italian bread salad that originated in Romana and Toscana. It’s a refreshing summer salad that features stale bread as a key ingredient in this flavorful salad.

Panzanella Romana includes tomatoes, cucumber, red onion, basil, and a simple dressing. Panzanella Toscana features tomatoes, red onion, basil, and a dressing typically with red wine vinegar and olive oil. Both versions offer a delicious way to enjoy Mediterranean flavors and use up stale bread.

Ingredients for Panzanella Toscana on a white backdrop with descriptive labels.

πŸ₯— Ingredient Notes

To make your own Panzanella Toscana, you will need the following ingredients:

  • Bread – the preferred choice for Panzanella Toscana is unsalted Tuscan bread, but if it’s unavailable, any artisan crusty bread will do. Avoid soft breads like sandwich bread or dinner rolls, as they become too mushy when soaked.
  • Tomatoes -ripe tomatoes are essential, bringing a juicy and refreshing element to the salad.
  • Red onion – sliced red onions provide a crisp texture and added flavor. Red onions add a pop of color, but white or yellow onions work well too.
  • Basil– add fragrant fresh basil leaves for their herbal note. Tear them gently by hand for the best aroma and flavor.
  • Water + red wine vinegar – this mixture will moisten the bread cubes and adds acidity to the salad.
  • Extra virgin olive oil – provides richness and enhances the flavors.
  • Salt and pepper – season the salad according to taste.

🍞 Substitutions and Add-Ins

Substitutions

  • If you can’t find Tuscan bread, you can use other types of crusty bread, such as ciabatta or baguette.
  • For a milder flavor, you can substitute red onion with shallots or sweet onions.
  • If you don’t have fresh basil, use other fresh herbs like parsley, cilantro, or oregano for a unique twist.

Add-Ins

  • Cucumbers – thinly sliced cucumbers can add a refreshing crunch to the salad.
  • Bell Peppers– add diced red, yellow, or orange bell peppers for extra color and sweetness.
  • Mozzarella – vegan mozzarella cheese, cubed or torn into pieces, can add creaminess to the salad.
  • Dijon mustard – adds a tangy and slightly spicy taste to the salad.
  • Olives – pitted Kalamata or green olives add a briny and savory element.
  • Capers – to provide a tangy and salty flavor to the Panzanella salad.

πŸ₯— How To Make Panzanella Toscana (step-by-step with photos)

This salad comes together in about 15 minutes with a gfew simple ingredients.

Step 1.
In a large mixing bowl, combine vinegar and water. Mix well to combine.

Step 2.
Cut the bread into thick cubes. Add the bread cubes into the bowl with the vinegar and water mixture. Use a spoon to help immerse the bread and ensure it is well-soaked.

Step 3.
Cut the tomatoes into halves or quarters if using cherry tomatoes or into chunks or cubes if using regular tomatoes. Slice the onions and place them, along with the tomatoes, in a separate mixing bowl.

Step 4.
Drain and gently squeeze the bread with your hands to remove excess moisture.

Step 5.
Crumble the bread into the bowl with the onions and tomatoes.

Step 6.
Season with salt and pepper, then add extra virgin olive oil and fresh basil.

Step 7.
Mix everything well to combine all the ingredients. Cover the bowl and allow the Panzanella Toscana to rest in the fridge for at least 20 minutes before serving. This resting period allows the flavors to meld together.

Make sure to check the recipe card for the full recipe with the exact quantities and information on all the ingredients.

πŸ“” Tips

  • Use slightly stale or day-old bread for the best texture. It should be crusty outside and slightly dry inside. To mimic this, you can lightly toast fresh bread cubes in the oven.
  • Choose ripe tomatoes that are firm but yield slightly to gentle pressure. Heirloom or cherry tomatoes can add extra color and sweetness.
  • Let the salad sit for at least 20 minutes before serving to allow the bread cubes to absorb the dressing and tomato juices evenly.
  • Tear basil by hand leaves just before adding them to release their aroma and preserve their fresh, herbal notes.

❓ How To Store Panzanella Salad

Panzanella Toscana can be stored in the refrigerator for up to 1 day. To keep it fresh, place the salad in an airtight container.

A Panzanella salad is best enjoyed on the day it is prepared. Storing it for too long may result in a loss of texture and flavor. I recommend making this Tuscan salad in quantities that you can consume within a day for optimal taste and texture. It is still safe to eat the next day, but the texture may not be as desirable.

If you have leftover Panzanella Toscana, freshen it up just before serving. Add a drizzle of olive oil to restore some of the freshness. Give it a gentle toss to redistribute the flavors, and enjoy!

πŸ’¬ Frequently Asked Questions

What does panzanella mean in Italian?

“Panzanella” is an Italian word that refers to a traditional bread salad. It is derived from “pane,” meaning bread, and “zanella,” a type of deep plate or bowl used to serve the salad

How do you eat Panzanella?

When it comes to enjoying Panzanella, it is commonly served as either a main or a side dish, especially during summer. To savor this delightful salad, simply place it on a plate and use a fork to enjoy each flavorful bite.

What can you eat with Panzanella?

Panzanella is often served as a standalone dish or a side dish to accompany grilled meats like chicken, steak, or pork chops. But there are plenty of vegan options to serve panzanella.

Instead of grilled meats, serve Panzanella alongside vegan alternatives like marinated tofu, tempeh, or plant-based sausages. The salad’s refreshing nature will complement the smoky flavors of these vegan grilling options.

Create a vegan-friendly antipasto platter by including Panzanella and marinated artichokes, roasted peppers, and bruschetta topped with diced tomatoes, olives, and vegan cheeses or cheese alternatives.

A serving bowl with Panzanella Toscana with yellow and red cherry tomatoes garnished with fresh small basil leaves and served on a white backdrop.

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πŸ“– Recipe

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A bowl with Panzanella Toscana with yellow and red cherry tomatoes served on a white towel.

Panzanella Toscana

  • Author: Bianca
  • Prep Time: 15
  • Total Time: 15
  • Yield: 2 1x
  • Category: salad
  • Method: bowl
  • Cuisine: Italian
  • Diet: Vegan

Description

Originating from Tuscany, Panzanella Toscana is an Italian bread salad. This salad combines stale bread, ripe tomatoes, onions, and basil, dressed in extra virgin olive oil and a hint of vinegar. This salad is perfect for warm-weather gatherings and takes only 15 minutes to make. 


Ingredients

Scale
  • 200 grams / 7 oz stale Tuscan bread (or ciabatta or baguette)
  • 450 grams / 1 lb. pound ripe tomatoes
  • 1 small red onion
  • 1 bunch of fresh basil leaves
  • 7 tbsp (100 ml) water
  • 7 tbsp (100 ml) red wine vinegar
  • 1 1/2 tbsp (22 ml) extra virgin olive oil
  • salt and pepper to taste

Instructions

  1. In a large mixing bowl, combine vinegar and water. Mix well to combine.
  2. Cut the bread into thick cubes. I recommended cutting the bread into smaller pieces to allow for faster soaking. Add the bread cubes into the bowl with the vinegar and water mixture. Use a spoon to help immerse the bread and ensure it is well-soaked.
  3. Cut the tomatoes into halves or quarters if using cherry tomatoes or into chunks or cubes if using regular tomatoes. Slice the onions and place them, along with the tomatoes, in a separate mixing bowl.
  4. Drain and gently squeeze the bread with your hands to remove excess moisture.
  5. Crumble the bread into the bowl with the onions and tomatoes.
  6. Season the mixture with salt and pepper, then add extra virgin olive oil and fresh basil.
  7. Mix everything well to combine all the ingredients.
  8. Cover the bowl and allow the Panzanella Toscana to rest in the fridge for at least 20 minutes before serving. This resting period allows the flavors to meld together.
  9. Just before serving, give the salad a toss. Serve the Panzanella Toscana and garnish with additional fresh basil leaves, if desired. Serve at room temperature.

Notes

  • Use slightly stale or day-old bread for the best texture. You can lightly toast fresh bread cubes in the oven to mimic this. Avoid soft breads like sandwich bread or dinner rolls, as they become too mushy when soaked.
  • Use ripe tomatoes. Heirloom or cherry tomatoes can add extra color and sweetness.
  • Let the salad sit for at least 20 minutes before serving to allow the bread cubes to absorb the dressing and tomato juices evenly.
  • Tear basil leaves just before adding them to release their fresh, herbal notes.
  • Enjoy Panzanella on the day it’s prepared for the best flavor. If you have any leftovers, store in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 1 day. The bread may become softer as it absorbs moisture.
  • Freshen up leftovers with a drizzle of olive oil and a gentle toss before serving.

Nutrition

  • Serving Size: 2
  • Calories: 549
  • Sugar: 13.6g
  • Fat: 16.2g
  • Carbohydrates: 84.2g
  • Protein: 15.8g

Keywords: salad, summer, italian, panzanella, panzanella toscana,

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