This is a traditional salad recipe in Puglia, southern Italy, and is similar to the Tuscan panzanella. Both are a great way of using up stale bread, which
soaks up the delicious juices of the tomatoes and dressing, but this one is even more frugal and we reckon better. Use the best oil you can afford, as you really notice the difference in this salad.
– about 200g stale ciabatta or good sourdough-type bread
– 1 small red onion, very finely sliced
– 500g very ripe tomatoes
– 1 garlic clove, crushed
– ½ tsp dried oregano
– 2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
– handful of black olives
– small bunch of basil
– salt and black pepper
1. Tear or cut the bread into chunks of about 3–4cm. Sprinkle them with a little water – just enough to moisten the surface. You don’t want the bread to get
too sodden as it will also soak up some of the tomato juices.
2. Sprinkle the red onion slices with salt and put them in a bowl of cold water for half an hour – this reduces the bitterness. Drain the slices and set them aside.
3. Roughly chop the tomatoes and put them in a serving bowl, together with any juices released when you’re chopping. Add the garlic and oregano and season
well with salt and pepper.
4. Drizzle over the olive oil, then add the bread, drained onion, olives and basil.
5. Leave the salad to stand for half an hour at room temperature before serving.
The Hairy Bikers are on their bikes again, searching out the very best recipes from around the world. This time, they’re discovering the most delicious food from our favourite Mediterranean countries.
Including recipes from their upcoming prime time BBC Two cookery show, Mediterranean Adventure celebrates the culinary delights of France, Spain and Italy. With more of us understanding the health benefits of a Med diet, these hearty and healthy dishes are a taste of the very best holiday memories.
Fresh, classic, easy and seasonal, enjoy their favourite Med recipes with the nation’s favourite cooking duo!
The Hairy Bikers’ Mediterranean Adventure is published by Orion Books.