Go Back

Tomato and Peach Panzanella

A blue background with a white bowl filled with sliced peaches, tomatoes, red onions, basil, and chunks of bread.
Tomato and peach panzanella may sound unlikely but it's gonna knock your socks off. Or, if you're not wearing socks this time of year, then it'll knock your flip-flops off. Guaranteed.
Sarah Waldman

Prep 20 mins
Cook 15 mins
Total 1 hr
Sides
Italian
4 to 6 servings
318 kcal

Ingredients 

  • 1 whole French baguette* torn into 1-inch (25-mm) chunks (about 6 cups)
  • 1/2 cup olive oil
  • 3/4 teaspoon kosher salt plus more as needed
  • 3 large (about 1 lb) tomatoes or 3 cups cherry tomatoes sliced
  • 3 large (about 1 lb) peaches pitted and sliced
  • 3 tablespoons red wine vinegar
  • 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper plus more as needed
  • 1/2 (about 4 oz) red onion thinly sliced
  • 1/2 cup torn, chopped or thinly sliced fresh basil

Directions 

  • Preheat the oven to 400°F (200°C).
  • In a large bowl, toss the bread chunks with 2 tablespoons olive oil and then sprinkle with 1/4 teaspoon salt. Place the bread on a rimmed baking sheet in a single layer. Bake until evenly toasted, stirring once or twice, 10 to 20 minutes.
  • In a large bowl, gently toss the tomatoes and peaches with 1/2 teaspoon salt. Slowly pour the tomato and peach mixture into a colander and place it over the bowl you used to toss the tomatoes and peaches. Let the tomatoes and peaches drain while the bread toasts.
  • Lift the colander of tomatoes and peaches out of the bowl and set it aside. You should have some juices in the bottom of the bowl. Whisk 6 tablespoons oil, the vinegar, and the black pepper into the tomato and peach juices. Add the toasted bread, toss to coat, and let it soak, tossing occasionally, for 10 minutes.
  • Add the tomatoes and peaches, red onion, and basil to the bowl with the bread and toss to combine. Season with salt and pepper to taste and serve immediately.

Notes

*Can I use stale bread instead of toasted bread in panzanella?

Hear us out on this—you can use stale bread but it still needs to be toasted. The biggest difference between stale and dried (toasted) bread is how it's going to absorb that lush vinaigrette. Stale bread, because of molecular differences that we only partially understand, will be tough and crusty at its core while getting mushy with dressing at the same time. But toast that very same bread and you'll end up with something that passes  for decent bread again. The same goes for the fresh, tender stuff you've got. Toasting as instructed in the recipe will give you something that can stand up to the dressing but not be too much of a workout to eat.