Summer’s not quite over, the sun is still resplendent throughout the Italian peninsula and we decided to inaugurate the new Santa Cristina blog season with an extremely simple but tasty and refreshing dish.
Panzanella comes from humble peasant origins and is usually served as an antipasto, while in the past it was often eaten as the main meal. The key ingredient is unsalted Tuscan bread that is soaked in water, without breaking up the slices, delicately wrung when softened, and dressed with extra virgin olive oil and the other recipe ingredients.
The classic version strictly requires the usage of summer vegetables from home gardens such as tomatoes, cucumbers, onion and basil. Our version is enhanced by the addition of high quality canned tuna.
It’s highly recommended to let this dish rest in the refrigerator to cool before serving.
— 4 pieces of thickly cut old bread
— 1/2 glass of water
— 2 spoons of Red wine vinegar
— 4 leaves of basil
— 1/2 red onion
— 1/2 cucumber
— 1 tomato
— Salt and pepper to taste
— 3 spoons of olive oil
— 3 spoons of canned tuna
- Slice unsalted Tuscan bread and place in a bowl of fresh water seasoned with red wine vinegar to taste. The best Tuscan bread is made from stone-milled grains and cooked in wood-fired ovens.
- After a few minutes, wring the excess water from the bread and place in a large serving dish. Add the sliced tomatoes, onions, cucumbers and canned tuna. Generously season with extra virgin olive oil, salt and freshly grated pepper.
- Combine the ingredients and add the basil at the very end, gently breaking the leaves by hand. Place in the refrigerator and serve cold.