Wednesday, February 3, 2010

A Panzanella Fit For Spring

Spring is just around the corner. No doubt, you are preparing to enjoy the bounties of spring with al fresco dinners and lunches. Include this bright panzanella from blogger Heidi Swanson of 101 Cookbooks in your repertoire for a fresh take on spring salad.


1 lb loaf of day-old, whole wheat bread cut into 1-inch cubes
4 garlic cloves, chopped
1 shallot, chopped
1 tbsp fresh thyme
1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
1 bunch asparagus, trimmed and cut into segments
2 cups fresh or frozen peas
4 handfuls of spinach
1/4 cup small basil leaves
salt to taste

Toss the bread with shallot, thyme, salt, garlic, and olive oil until coated then spread it evenly on a baking sheet. Toast the bread until golden.

Heat a dash of olive oil and a splash of water in a pan with a bit of salt. When hot, stir in the asparagus and cook covered for 20 seconds before adding the peas and spinach. Cook until the spinach just starts to wilt.

Mix the toasted bread cubes and the vegetables with all the pan juices in a large bowl. Add the basil leaves and toss again.

Author: Kristine Gonzaga


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