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Creamy Dill Panzanella How-To

Creamy Dill Panzanella
Whip up this big salad for potlucks or lazy, late-summer deck dinners. MORE+ LESS-
By Carrian Cheney

A long time ago, when it was just my husband and I without any children, we would buy a loaf of crusty bread, eat a slice or two and then be left with more bread than we knew what to do with. I always felt so bad throwing it out, but I wasn’t sure what else to do. Then, one summer, we found ourselves with another loaf of leftover bread and an invitation to a potluck. This is how we discovered the beauty of a panzanella salad.

picture of completed panzanella from above

I called my sister, stressed out of my mind. I didn’t have time to run to the store, and I needed to bring something to the potluck. When she asked what I had, I flippantly said, “Bread. So what am I supposed to do with that?! Bring croutons?!”

This wise, “old” soul (I’m allowed to say that because she’s older than me) said, “Yeah, make croutons, and I’ve got a garden full of veggies that you can use. Make a panzanella.”

Say what?!

close up of bread sliced and diced on a wood cutting board

That was the moment I learned that panzanella is a delicious bread salad, and just about the best way to use up that yummy bread sitting on the counter. It’s kind of like bruschetta all chopped up in a bowl and served with a really light dressing. It’s wonderful. Don’t be afraid of it one bit – you’ll find that even after dinner is over you can’t help but keep picking in the bowl. Enjoy!

finished panzanella in a bowl