There are small details that make huge differences. After a reader, Francesca of Salvadonica left a comment saying there were loads of videos of panzanella or tomato bread salad on youtube I thought i'd go take a look. I did indeed find many videos of chefs making panzanella however there was always something wrong. Staten Island - everyone has tomatoes in the garden, and I agree with you - I also agree on the best olive oil to buy. I don't however agree on the toasted bread - this is a mistake I saw in almost all the videos. People think you can use toasted bread instead of stale bread - the reason for our use of stale bread is substantial. If the bread is stale and is then soaked in water, after it gets squeezed out it is ready to absorb the juices - on the contrary if you toast bread it will become crunchy and good but it's a crouton that will never really blend in with the other ingredients. Forget the lobster, I don't care - those are the extras, anyone can do whatever they like with panzanella as long as the basic structure is correct. [youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZAFDXNQH1OQ[/youtube] Chef Matt almost had it perfect - he had it all right: the tomatoes from the farmer's harvest and all, then came the bite size pieces of onion and the balsamic vinaigrette. What's wrong? Well, the onions have to sliced finely cause they sort of mix in with the soft bread and tomatoes. It's not a crunchy salad. Also, there is no reason to use a prestigious balsamic vinegar all you need is a good red vinegar. [youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TBUoFQ1h9r0[/youtube] And the winner is: this video is perfect....nah, almost perfect it's certainly the best one I found around! Tiny detail, if you add the bread in the end and not in the beginning and the chopped un vegetables layered with the salt after you're sure to get all the juices absorbed by the bread! [youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YmQpvSv7HZM&feature=related[/youtube] My goal is not that of saying that these panzanellas aren't good - they will probably taste terrific, but I want to underline that as simple as tuscan cuisine is - every detail makes a difference.
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