Panzanella Recipe (Tuscan Bread Salad)

Over the last few days I had a visit from a good old friend of mine who comes from Tuscany.

My younger sister collecting tomatoes

Emanuela is a girl full of life and just like all Italians she loves her food and she is a great cook herself.

We have lots of memories of good times and plenty of laughs together; some friendships never seem to fade over the years and even though we have not been seen each other for a while, every time is like we have never been apart.  Good friendships are one of the best things in life after good food of course!

As my mum has beautiful tomatoes in her garden I kindly asked Emanuela to make “Panzanella” as I was really craving for it since I had it in Tuscany long time ago when I visited her.

This is a typical Tuscan dish made with rustic Tuscan bread, fresh tomatoes, basil and cucumbers. A fresh, cheap and simple dish but full of taste!

You will need rustic bread which should be stale; so best to buy it and leave it aside for a couple of days.

  • Prep Time : 30 minutes


  • stale rustic bread – 8 slices
  • basil leaves – a few
  • red onion – 1
  • cucumber – 1
  • large tomatoes – 4
  • olive oil – 4 tbsp
  • vinegar – 2 tbsp
  • salt and pepper


Leave the bread to dry for a couple of days if it is fresh. You will need 8 slices

Soften the bread in water

Wring the excess water out and crumble the bread with your hands, then put it in a large bowl.

Finely slice the onion, peel and slice the cucumber and the tomatoes. Wash and chop the basil with your hands and add the ingredients to the bowl

Add vinegar, olive oil, salt and pepper and mix everything well together

Store it in the fridge


6 thoughts on “Panzanella Recipe (Tuscan Bread Salad)

  1. How sweet of your friend to share her recipe for Panzanella, Alida. I too have friends I haven’t seen in a long while and yet when we are together it is like we didn’t miss a beat:)

    Although my grandmother was from Sicily, her bread salad was made almost the exact same way. The only difference I can see is she always included olives, lol…

    Thank you for sharing Alida and please thank Emanuela for us too…


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