Zucchini and Herb Panzanella Salad

Zucchini and Herb Panzanella Salad

Herbaceous is the word of the day with this salad. The textures and flavors make this fresh summer classic shine. Wondering what sourdough bread to use? This Italian-inspired salad is another great way to incorporate Ben's Bread into every single meal of the day. 

Ingredients

1 head Lusia radicchio, torn

1 baby fennel, cored and thinly shaved

4 slices sourdough bread, torn into 1- 1 ½ inch chunks

1 lb of zucchini or squash

½ cup dill, picked

¼ cup parsley, chopped

½ cup torn basil

¼ cup white wine vinegar

2 garlic cloves, finely chopped

¾ - 1 cup olive oil, separated

Fennel fronds, picked

Pinch of red pepper flakes

Kosher or sea salt

Black pepper

Method

Preheat oven to 400 F. Toss torn bread with 2 Tbsp olive oil and a generous pinch of salt until well coated. Bake for 10-15 minutes making sure that it doesn’t burn. It's perfect when they are crunchy on the outside but still have a slight chew on the inside. When they are ready, let cool and toss again with a bit more salt and a few cranks of black pepper.

Cut summer squash longways, down center. If using oil, toss zucchini with about 2 Tbsp olive oil, a pinch of salt and pepper. Grill on medium heat until just fork tender (but not mushy!) and when there are nice grill marks on each side. Pull off and let cool slightly. Cut into approximate 1-inch chunks, similar to the size of your bread pieces.

Add zucchini, shaved fennel, garlic, vinegar, red pepper flakes, 1 tsp salt and several twists of black pepper. Add parsley and ½ of the dill. Add the torn croutons then toss together with a  ¼  cup of olive oil. Add the remaining olive oil if you think it needs it! It should be well coated. Let rest 15-30 minutes to allow the juices to soak into the bread a bit. Sprinkle with torn basil, remaining dill, and a good picking of fennel fronds. Splash with some flakey salt.

Optional additions: 

  • A can of anchovies torn into small pieces is really delicious in this salad and highly recommended if you enjoy anchovies! 
  • Feta, goat cheese, or even some shaved pecorino romano or ricotta salata would also be a welcome addition to this salad. The possibilities are endless! 
  • And of course, when stone fruit season comes, you better bet we’ll be adding peaches and nectarines to this one.

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