Panzanella (Tuscan Bread Salad)

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Seeded, diced
3 lg Ripe tomatoes -- cored,
1 Red or Vidalia onion --
2 Ribs celery -- diced
Italian bread
1/2 md Cucumber -- diced
Crushed red pepper flakes
1/2 c Fresh basil leaves --
1/2 c Red wine vinegar
3/4 ts Anchovy paste
1 2/3 c Cold water
Salt -- pepper to taste
2 tb Capers -- drained
1 Clove garlic -- minced
1/3 c olive oil
10 oz Best-quality stale --

Original recipe makes 4 Servings



Preparation time: 20 minutes. Standing time: 10 minutes. This salad displays the Tuscan trait of using stale bread in innovative ways. Paired with fresh summer produce, the dried bread takes on a second life. Classically, a rustic Italian bread is used. We tried it with an olive oil and rosemary-scented loaf. Remove crusts from bread and cut bread into 1-inch chunks. Place in a large bowl and add water and vinegar. Toss lightly so the bread is completely soaked. Let stand 10 minutes. Squeeze bread gently but firmly to remove most of the moisture; return to a dry mixing bowl. Add tomatoes, onion, celery, cucumber, capers and garlic to bread and toss lightly. Whisk oil, anchovy paste, red pepper flakes, salt and pepper in a small bowl. Pour over bread mixture and toss well. Fold in basil. Chicago Tribune, 08/05/93. Recipe By : File

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