New Recipe (To Me!) - Stevie's Crazy Kitchen Blog at - 331539

Stevie's Crazy Kitchen

New Recipe (to me!) 
Aug. 14, 2014 8:23 pm 
Updated: Sep. 3, 2014 12:17 am
Yesterday's "food section" of the paper had a recipe/article that caught my eye.  Forgive me that I've forgotten the name of the local chef who supplied the recipe, but what's more important is that I was introduced to "Panzanella."  I just happened to have about a quarter loaf of crusty bread that was hard as a rock, and I had the tomatoes/cuke that the recipe called for.  I did have to do a couple substitutions, however, when I made this for dinner today!  I had no fresh basil or oregano, so I used dry, adding it to the dressing (red wine vinegar, olive oil, salt/pepper) some hours before mealtime, which I tasted and just KNEW that we'd not like it, and was forced to add sugar to make a sweet/sour version.  I've also learned a few things about putting this salad together, which I will make notes about before I make it again!

This chef roasts his dry bread after tossing with a little oil, which made total sense to me, as personally, I enjoy "crunch" in my food!  Also, as directed, I didn't toss the salad until about 10 mins before mealtime, and did add a bit of water to the bread.  Even at that, the bread was soggy by serving time, and I'm sure will be mostly disintegrated by tomorrow (if not already!) 

So, will I make this again?  Most certainly!  I'll reduce the amount of dressing per amount of veg's.  Again, I will not toss it with the dressing until just before serving, cutting the vinegar by half, skip the water, and only making what I think we'll eat that meal!  I'm sure fresh herbs would make a difference, but alas...  The recipe also called for red/purple onion, which I didn't have, so I chopped a shallot rather than using yellow onion. 

The flavors are great (with added sugar,) but between the vinegar and tomato, the acid bothered my stomach (an odd happening!)  Of course, I'd never reshearched this dish, as I simply had never heard of it before, and lo and behold, there's a  bunch of recipes here at a/r (big surprise!?)  So, I will experiment with the recipe I have, and any here that sound good, and go from there! 

Tomorrow's adventure - Grilled Romain Lettuce!  This one should be really interesting, as my romaine is rather aged and near useless in a salad! 

Till next time, be well, cook CRAZY!
Aug. 15, 2014 12:26 pm
Panzanella salads were all the rage on the Buzz a few years back. I'm not much of a fan of soggy bread. Now, grilled Romaine is a favorite around here!
Aug. 15, 2014 12:56 pm
Hello Stevie, i don't care for Panzanella salad, but do love bread:)) Never had grilled Romaine, will have to try that sometime.
Aug. 16, 2014 12:16 pm
Not a fan of soggy bread either but I did try grilled greens this year. I was impressed by that dish cause I used lettuces from the garden that were getting to the almost bitter point where they aren't so good in a fresh salad.
Aug. 16, 2014 4:36 pm
I just chunk tomatoes and cucumbers and Texas Toast Croutons. Then sprinkle with Garlic salt pepper,and Thyme Vinegar Yumm.
Aug. 18, 2014 1:13 pm
I love Panzanella! My favorite recipe came from here. I've only made it a couple times, because as you said, it gets soggy and undesirable after a short while. Great's fun to find new and exciting recipes!
Sep. 3, 2014 12:17 am
To all above, sorry for my absence - just WHERE is the time going? Wasn't Easter just a month ago? I've not attempted the salad again, and while I did grill the Romaine halves, I undercooked them... NOT overly appealing, but my error for sure! Now off to make another post. Thanks for all of the comments! Be well, friends!
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Stevie crazycook

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Lansing, Michigan, USA
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About Me
Started cooking many years ago, and learned as I went. First meal may have been "steak & chips" at age 15, in Birmingham England, where I lived for several years. Mostly grew up in MI, transplanted to the desert 30yrs ago, or so. Favorite cookbook is "Better Homes", also enjoy "Great British Cooking, a well kept secret." Hesitate to call myself "expert," but friends do rave...
My favorite things to cook
Italian has been my "specialty" for some time, and my "signature" meal is Lasagne, salad, garlic bread, which I first made 20yrs ago... from SCRATCH, very first time I made it. (Never again, folks...) Now start with a big jar of sauce!
My favorite family cooking traditions
Thanks to my heritage, I have enjoyed trying foods from different cultures. We still have beer battered fish, and chips of course; ground meat dishes often, chicken occasionally, pork too. I would love to submit a bean dip recipe, however, my ex who gave me the original has passed, and I have no way to verify that it didn't come from another source! I also enjoy British cooking (with a few yankee twists) and once made Plum puddings, also known as Christmas puddings, as far as I know... what an ordeal that was, but well worth the effort. Today, there is mail order!
My cooking triumphs
Greatest triumph was not too long ago, when I held a sit down dinner for 12, Lasagne being the entree. It was a fund raiser I chose to sponsor, and am proud to say that "we" raised over $1000 from that meal alone, minimum donation being $25. All proceeds collected were donated; my partner and I provided the meal and beverages.
My cooking tragedies
MEATLOAF of all things! Went through a stage of "winging" it each time, and I pulled one after another out of the oven that were almost unedible. As yet, not too big on baking... no sweet tooth here! Have dabbled, but find doughs/pastries especially difficult, perhaps as it's 90 degrees in my kitchen much of the year.
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