I enjoyed a childhood filled with an abundance of tree fruits. Cherry, apple, prune plums and crab apple trees adorned the front yard. I often wonder if the people who live in that house now enjoy the fruit trees as much as we did. I have fond memories of the battles my father would have with the birds (Robins mostly) eating his cherries. Sometimes when I think back to those battles, he reminds me of Mr. McGregor in The Tale of Peter Rabbit.
There are many variations of panzanella salads and I love how versatile this salad is especially in the summer months. Summer cherries just seems to work in this salad. It’s a salad that’s actually been around a very long time. Did you know Panzanella was based on onions, not tomatoes until the 20th century? And modern panzanella is generally made of stale bread soaked in water and squeezed dry? I’m not much on eating stale bread soaked & squeezed…I prefer my crunchy croutons!
It’s easy to toss the bread on the grill, chop up some veggies, mix up a dressing, pick your favourite cheese to add and you have a delicious dinner ready to go. Firmer veggies are best for this salad. It’s perfect for a potluck or to take camping. Days like today when it’s to hot to cook, we like to pick up a cooked roasted chicken, whip up an easy salad and dinner is done. Toss some firm fruit or berries into your salad and change it up again.
Better photo coming soon!
- 1 loaf day old french bread, sliced 1 inch thick
- 2 cups cherry tomatoes, halved
- 1 cup fresh cherries, halved & pits removed
- 2 tbsp toasted pepitas (pumpkin seeds)
- 1 package halloumi cheese grilled and cut into smaller pieces
- fresh basil
- olive oil
- red wine vinegar
- Slice your bread into 1 inch pieces and drizzle with olive oil on both sides.
- Preheat your grill to medium high. BBQ on both sides until grill marks or a little char occurs.
- Chop into bite size pieces. You will want between 5-6 cups.
- Lightly toss cherries, tomatoes, halloumi cheese, grilled bread and dressing.
- Sprinkle with fresh basil and pepitas. Serve immediately.