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Panzanella from Jared Ingersoll’s Danks St Depot

2010 January 12

It’s summer, and that means that some produce, like tomatoes, are at their peak. Juicy, flavoursome and luscious. Now funnily enough I’m not a massive fan of tomatoes. It’s taken me years to be totally down with tomatoes. Probably because for the most part the ones we get at the supermarket are bland, and meh.

I was recently at Fratelli Fresh at Waterloo dining with friends at Cafe Sopra, when we bumped into some acquaintances, one of whom raved about the Johnny’s Lovebites tomatoes available downstairs. On his recommendation I grabbed a large container and took them home. When I opened them and tasted one I was blown away. They were the sweetest, juiciest most gorgeous tomatoes I’d ever eaten. EVER.

I decided that in order to showcase how gorgeously sweet they were I had to find a recipe that didn’t mess with them at all. What better than a tomato focussed salad! Panzanella is a traditional simple salad from Italy. Everyone would have their own version and this one is from Jared Ingersoll from Danks St Depot.


Tomato Dressing

  • 3 large ripe ox heart tomatoes, chopped (don’t lose too much juice)
  • 2 anchovy fillets
  • 45ml red wine vinegar (I used balsamic)
  • salt and pepper
  • 185ml extra virgin olive oil

Place all the ingredients in a food processer/blender and blend until pureed, juicy. Taste and adjust seasoning to suit.
Once it tastes just right, strain the dressing to remove seeds and skin.
Don’t throw out the strained bits! I ate it as a spread on crackers with cheese!


  • 1 large capsicum roasted/grilled (I used yellow cause that’s what I had in the fridge)
  • 1 loaf of dry sourdough, ripped into pieces and dried or stale
  • an amount of the best, sweetest and ripest tomatoes you can find
  • Some fresh basil leaves
  • Some fresh parsley (I didn’t have any)
  • Some more anchovy fillets (if you like them)
  • salt and pepper
  • Parmsesan

Roast, peel and deseed your capsicums.
If you don’t have stale bread, dry your bread carefully in the oven on the lowest temperature possible for about 15 minutes. Check it fairly often to make sure you don’t burn it.
Once the bread’s done and cooled add it to a large serving dish, and then pour over about half of the dressing so the bread soaks it all up!
You want to have an equal proportion of tomatoes to bread.
Add your roughly chopped tomatoes, basil, capsicum, anchovies, salt and pepper.
Gently toss your salad, pour over remaining dressing and shave over parmesan

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18 Responses leave one →
  1. January 11, 2010

    Now I have the recipe I will make this!! Looks every bit as good as you said it would!

  2. January 11, 2010

    This sounds wonderful. I love it when I come across really good tomatoes. It makes such a difference to a dish.
    .-= barbara´s last blog ..Day Trip To Inala =-.

  3. pandas_4 permalink
    January 11, 2010

    Johnny’s Lovebites huh? I will have to keep an eye open for them. Sounds delicious!

  4. January 11, 2010

    Johnny Lovebites are my favourite tomatoes! I think they’d convert a tomato hater (and yes I think people really dislike them because they are so rubbish at the supermarket).
    .-= Lorraine @ Not Quite Nigella´s last blog ..Confessions Of A Foodie =-.

  5. January 11, 2010

    I’m inspired to make it! Been a while since I’ve eaten it.

    The right tomato can make a big difference. I’ll keep an eye out for this variety. Such an easy name to remember!
    .-= Gourmantic´s last blog ..Milestones and Celebrations: Indulgent Afternoon Tea at Burj Al Arab =-.

  6. January 12, 2010

    This saved my life last night – the perfect dinner on a blastingly hot night. I had to make some (minor) changes to save my sanity as there was no way I was braving the outside again but it was still lovely. Set to become a summer standby!
    .-= Injera´s last blog ..Christmas dinner – an equal division of labour? =-.

  7. January 12, 2010

    Fabulous recipe, Reem! It’s a shame that lovebite tomatoes aren’t more readily available, your photos have me ravenous for them.
    .-= Belle@OohLook´s last blog ..The old ‘Butterflies in a Frame’ trick =-.

  8. January 12, 2010

    I think the first time I fell in love with this salad was when I had it in Rockpool – I never got around to trying it but you’ve just provided some great inspiration!

    .-= Trissa´s last blog ..The Blog Monster Strikes Again – Mango Jubilee! =-.

  9. January 13, 2010

    I love tomatoes and this looks delicious! I think my favourite tomatoes are still the good old Italian friendly oxheart tomatoes and the uber flavourful kumatoes. Sooo good!
    .-= Forager´s last blog ..Hiatus =-.

  10. January 14, 2010

    I’ve yet to try tomatoes that aren’t available in Woolies, but you’ve just inspired me to pick some up before summer is over. This just looks gorgeous.

  11. pommiefoodie permalink
    January 14, 2010

    I grow my own tomatoes for exactly that reason. Don’t have the room to grow many now but it’s surprising what you can do with pots on a balcony. I have to revert to supermarket ones most of the year, but the homegrown ones are a special treat.

  12. January 15, 2010

    I love panzanella!
    .-= Hummingbird Appetite´s last blog ..Meatless Day: Roasted eggplant sandwich with caramelized onions =-.

  13. January 15, 2010

    Love Panzanella. Perfect for summer 🙂 I must try this recipe soon!
    .-= Ellie´s last blog ..Recipe Shout-Out (5) =-.

  14. January 17, 2010

    Panzanella! I’ve never had it before but have always been fascinated by it. Guess this is a great recipe to start with huh!
    .-= Sweets at Vicky’s´s last blog ..Better Buttercream =-.

  15. January 18, 2010

    Half way through Summer and I haven’t had a Panzanella yet! I had this at Danks St Depot last Summer, and it was fabulous.
    .-= Y´s last blog ..Back to it, a pillow cheesecake and a giveaway. =-.

  16. January 18, 2010

    Ohh, I’ll have to try these tomatoes now… they sound good. I’d never heard of them till now, so thanks for the tip.

    You know, I may have noticed them at the same store had I not been feeling so ‘awkward’ recently! 😉 hint hint….
    .-= Ladybird´s last blog ..Awkward Food Blogging Moments =-.

  17. January 19, 2010

    Yum, love tomatoes, good and healthy recipe!
    .-= peteformation´s last blog ..East Meet West Celery Sauce Elbows Macaroni with Fried Wantan (Fried Sui Kow, Chinese Dumplings) =-.

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