Panzanella Salad

Serves 6

Tips – Ciabatta or any crusty bread can also be used. Red onion, capers, olives are also possible additions.

  • ¼ cup pancetta, diced
  • 5 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 3 slices day-old French bread, 2.5cm thick
  • 4 Roma tomatoes, cored and halved lengthwise
  • ½ cup mini bocconcini
  • ¼ cup fresh basil, slivered
  • 2 tablespoons red wine vinegar
  • 1 garlic clove, finely chopped
  • 1/2 teaspoon Dijon mustard
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/8 teaspoon freshly ground pepper
  • balsamic vinegar or balsamic vinegar glaze, to serve (optional)
  1. Sauté pancetta in a small frypan over medium heat until browned and crisp. Remove with a slotted spoon, place on paper towels and set aside. Drain excess fat from frypan into a bowl. Add 3 tablespoons oil to fat and stir to combine.
  2. Brush oil mixture evenly over both sides of bread slices and cut sides of tomatoes.
  3. Grill bread slices and tomatoes, cut side down, over low heat on barbecue or grill pan until bread slices are lightly toasted on both sides and tomatoes are warmed, about 3 minutes. Remove from heat.
  4. When cool enough to handle, cut bread slices and tomatoes into 2.5cm pieces.
  5. Combine pancetta, bread, tomatoes, bocconcini and basil in a bowl.
  6. To prepare dressing, whisk together 2 tablespoons oil, red wine vinegar, garlic, mustard, salt and pepper until blended.
  7. Add dressing to bread mixture and toss to combine.
  8. Serve drizzled with balsamic vinegar.
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