Dinner was lunch today, as I ate before heading to CBC and then went more or less straight to Julliard to celebrate my brother in law’s graduation, where we had drinks and snacks and cake, not really dinner per se, so again I’m falling back on what was technically my last meal of the day. It was hot enough this afternoon to turn my baggie of chocolate covered pretzels into a bag of pretzels in chocolate sauce in the car, so there was no actual cooking. Fortunately I just came up with this new salad – a cross between pan bagnat (pan ban-YAH) – a sandwich from the south of France made with tuna, olives, tomatoes and hard boiled eggs – and a panzanella salad, which is based on torn up chunks of bread, rather than lettuce, potatoes or other vegetables or grains. The bread soaks up the dressing, and creates a more substantial base; it’s kind of like tearing up your sandwich into chunks and eating it with a fork.
If you want to drizzle the torn bread chunks with oil and toast them they will turn out more like croutons; Jamie Oliver has a similar salad onto which he sets a softly poached egg, whose yolk then dribbles over the greens and mingles with the lemony dressing. That’s definitely on my to-eat list for next week.
Pan Bagnat Panzanella (Salad)
1/2 loaf crusty bread or baguette, cut or torn into chunks
1 ripe tomato, chopped
1/2 purple onion, chopped
1 can tuna in oil, drained
1 hard-boiled egg, peeled and chopped
a handful of torn fresh basil or Italian parsley
1/2 cup Kalamata olives
a couple spoonfuls of capers, drained
1/2 cup canola or olive oil
1/4 cup red wine vinegar
1/4 cup lemon juice
lots of pepper
Make a salad using chunks of bread, chopped tomato, onion, flaked tuna, egg, basil or parsley and olives. Using a vegetable peeler, peel strips of Parmesano-Reggiano cheese over top, and sprinkle with capers. Toss with dressing and serve immediately.