Something about me – I hate raw tomatoes. This is a problem when it comes to a lot of salad recipes. I also bake my own bread, which means I often have ends of loaves that are a few days old and past their prime – Panzanella is the perfect way to use them!
Imagine then my delight when I was flipping through food blogs the other day and came across a recipe for a tomato-free Panzanella Salad using sweet yellow bell peppers instead! (The inspiration recipe can be found here).
I simplified the dressing slightly and have substituted Balsamic Vinegar (partly because that’s what I had in the cupboard, and partly because it provides a richer flavour). In the past I may have passed on the capers since my husband and I have only recently discovered we like them, but I would highly recommend not omitting them – the salty punch they provide really makes the salad.
This salad makes a great lunch or, for dinner, I often serve with a simple grilled or baked fish.
INGREDIENTS (4 SERVINGS)
2 CUPS BREAD CUBED – This is a great way to use old bread!
2 TBSP MELTED BUTTER
1 TSP GARLIC POWDER
2 YELLOW BELL PEPPERS CORED AND CUT INTO 1/2 INCH STRIPS – You can also use red or orange for a more colourful salad.
2 TBSP CAPERS
1 CUP TORN BASIL LEAVES – Roughly one bunch of basil.
3 TBSP BALSAMIC VINEGAR – You can also use red wine vinegar, or a combination of the two.
3 TBSP OIL – I use canola because I find it has the most neutral flavour, but olive oil or vegetable oil is also fine if you prefer.
SALT & PEPPER TO TASTE
Cut bread into cubes and toss with melted butter and garlic power. Bake in 350º oven until golden and crispy croutons (approximately 10 min, tossing half way through).
Slice peppers into 1/2 inch strips and sauté or grill until tender.
Toss croutons, peppers and capers in a large salad bowl. Pour in vinegar and oil and toss well. Add torn basil leaves and toss just before serving.
Prep Time: 10 Min
Cooking Time: 20 min