Bakers Delight ciabatta loaf – Panzanella (tomato bread salad)

February 24 2013
by emma


Erin from Keep Left very kindly contacted me recently to ask if I might like to participate in Bakers Delight’s current campaign to develop a lunch recipe using my choice of their lovely, freshly made bread.  My immediate thought was the ciabatta because I love it, however I also really wanted to make something healthy and fresh, using some late summer produce, so I thought of panzanella, the traditional Italian tomato bread salad.

This is my version of panzanella and while I can’t say it’s at all traditional, I love this salad because it encompasses my favourites things in cooking with simple, Italian inspired, healthy, seasonal ingredients and showcases two of my favourite foods, ciabatta bread and fresh heirloom cherry tomatoes.  I’ve never met anybody who doesn’t love tomatoes and bread in some way or another so this dish is fabulous for having people over.  You only have to do a bit of chopping and such, and the oven is on for a minimal amount of time (so perfect for warmer weather!).

And don’t you love Italian food?  It’s always been one of my favourite cuisines from a young age because traditional Italian food always tastes wonderful with just a few ingredients.  Italian cuisine never goes out of style and everyone from kids to adults will happily sit down at a big, bustling table to tuck into rustic, healthy and simple meals.

As an alternative for this salad, and with just a bit more work, I also roasted some extra cherry tomatoes, red onion and capsicum for extra candy sweetness and added some avocado because, well you know, it’s avocado.  I’m actually really guilty of adding it to just about anything.

I have to say Bakers Delight’s ciabatta bread is fantastic; really tasty with an amazing chewy crust, springy soft crumb and to be perfectly honest, is wonderful simply with chunks torn off, dipped in good Italian extra virgin olive oil or slathered with soft unsalted butter as a simple snack or starter with a glass of wine.


In this recipe, the ciabatta is perfect.  The bread crisps up beautiful with a drizzle of oil and Parmesan grated over the top, diced and tossed through late summer juicy tomatoes, fragrant herbs, sweet red onion and capsicum, creamy avocado, a spicy, sweet dressing and salty olives.  Left to sit for a while in the salad, the bread becomes lovely and squishy and full of flavour from the salad.

Thanks so much Erin and Bakers Delight!

All opinions stated here are my own, I wasn’t paid to trial or review any products and I wasn’t under any obligation to write a positive review.  Thank you to Bakers Delight for their generosity in offering me their delicious bread to trial and review.



Recipe for Panzanella:

30mls balsamic vinegar
60mls extra virgin olive oil
1/2 tspn Dijon mustard
1 tspn honey
Freshly ground sea salt and black pepper
Tiny pinch chilli flakes

4 slices (160g) Bakers Delight ciabatta loaf
15mls olive oil
Garlic clove halved
20g Parmesan cheese, finely grated
Freshly ground black pepper

400g heirloom cherry tomatoes, halved
100g Kalamata olives, halved
Good handful fresh basil, chopped if the leaves are large
Handful continental parsley, chopped
Small avocado, diced
Freshly ground sea salt and black pepper

250g cherry tomatoes, halved
1 red onion, halved then each half sliced in thirds
150g baby coloured capsicum, trimmed and halved
15mls olive oil

Add all ingredients to a glass jar and shake until combined.  Store in the fridge if you make it ahead of time then let it come to room temperature before using.

Preheat oven to 150C.  Place cherry tomatoes, onion and capsicum onto a baking paper lined baking tray and drizzle with olive oil, freshly ground sea salt and black pepper.  Roast for 40 minutes or until slightly caramelised and soft.  Set aside.

Increase oven temp to 190C.  Place baking paper onto a large, flat baking sheet.  Rub each piece of bread with cut side of garlic, drizzle over olive oil then sprinkle with Parmesan cheese.  Toast in oven for 10-12 minutes, or until golden brown.  Remove from the oven and slice into cubes and set aside.

Place raw tomatoes, olives, herbs and avocado into large bowl, season to taste and add dressing – toss together carefully making sure everything is coated with the dressing.  Add the bread and roast vegetables and toss gently further to combine.

Allow to sit for 15 minutes or so for the flavours to develop and for the bread to soften.  It’s even better if stored in the fridge for a few hours then brought to room temperature for 20 minutes or so.

Serves: 4 (using the added roast vegetables)

14 Responses leave one →
  1. That does look like a tasty loaf. This recipe reminds me of Fattoush, another tasty bread salad. I love ciabatta though, in there with the pretty tomatoes and avocado mmm.

  2. Yes, yes, I love Italian food, especially late-summer panzanella — yum! I also love that moving photo (is it Vine?). Reminds me a bit of Harry Potter 🙂

  3. Oh, Emma! Your Panzanella salad is exquisite, so fresh so incredibly delicious. I haven’t made it in such a long time. That photo of dipping in the oil…at first I thought I was seeing things, wow! so impressing. Love the superb photos, and the delicious ciabatta bread.
    Thank you so much for you sweet, and kind words, you are such a wonderful friend! xo

  4. I loved a lot about this. Bakers Delight is a very interestingly run business. It uses all sorts of interesting, environmentally-conscious practices, including giving farmers food waste to feed cattle. I love this recipe, and I love the extra additions, particularly the avocado and cherry tomato add-ons. My boyfriend’s family went to Italy recently, and the stories they tell about the simple and tasty food always has me enthralled. And the moving picture is so cool!

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