Wednesday, July 14, 2010

CEiMB - Panzanella with Chicken Sausage

When you are in a food blogging group, one of the biggest rewards for the member is when your turn comes around to host the group.  Guess whose turn it was this week?  Not Jennifer Aniston, not Ina Garten, not Giada or Paula Deen. Okay, if you guessed me, you are correct!

Ellie Krieger has so many wonderful recipes that are all healthy choices and that makes it difficult to choose just one.  With summer here, and vegetables plentiful in most areas of the country, farmer's markets here and there, I wanted to choose a recipe where we could incorporate the fresh goodness of those vegetables.  Ellie's Panzanella does just that.  Panzanella is simply bread and tomato salad.  It is simple and relaxing to make.  Pair it with a glass of wine and it becomes elegant as well.

I hope everyone that cooked along with me this week enjoyed this light fare as much as Chandler and I did.  He had his doubts because he is strictly a meat and potatoes guy, but he ate two helpings of this for dinner.  He even asked if we could save the leftovers for dinner for the next night!  That was a huge compliment to me.

I found some really beautiful vine ripened tomatoes at Publix.  The cucumber came from my very own backyard garden.  Here is a photo of ONE of my cucumbers that got caught in the fence, but this is not the cucumber I used in my panzanella!  Isn't it funny looking?

I peel my cucumbers.  Some people do not and that is okay.  I just think the peel is a tiny bit bitter tasting.  I do not peel my tomatoes, though some do.  While I do not care for recipes with cooked basil in them, the fresh basil is so wonderful.  The red onion was sweet and just brought all the flavors together.  The chicken sausage was really delicious.  I cooked it on the grill, but had a hard time getting any grill marks to show on it!

For all of you who cooked with me this week - thank you so much!  It is a joy to cook with you and I look forward to seeing your versions of this great summer dish.

Per Serving: Calories 520; Total Fat 25 G; Sat Fats 5 G; Mono Fat 8 G; Poly Fat 3 G; Protein 36 G; Carb 39 G; Fiber 10 G; Cholesterol 110 Mg; Sodium 540 Mg
Excellent Source of Fiber, Folate, Manganese, Potassium, Protein, Selenium, Vitamin A, Vitamin C, Vitamin K
Good Source of Copper, Iron, Magnesium, Niacin, Phosphorus, Thiamin, Vitamin B6

Panzanella with Chicken Sausage

8 medium ripe tomatoes, cut into wedges (about 1-1/2 pounds)
1 small English cucumber, cut into half moons
1/2 medium red onion, thinly sliced into half moons
3 tablespoons olive oil
1 tablespoon red wine vinegar
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1 small whole-grain baguette or other crusty bread (preferably day-old;
about 8 ounces), cut into 3/4-inch chunks
1/3 cup basil leaves, coarsely chopped
1 12-ounce package Italian-style pre-cooked chicken sausage

In a large bowl, toss together the tomatoes, cucumber, onion, oil, vinegar, salt, and pepper. Add the bread chunks and basil and toss well so all the bread is well moistened.
Preheat a grill or grill pan over medium-high heat.
Add the sausage and cook, turning once or twice, until warmed through and grill marks are formed, about 8 minutes. Serve the sausage, whole, alongside the panzanella.

Did You Know?
Chicken and turkey sausage contain 1/3 the calories and 1/3 the fat of regular pork sausage.


Bri said...

Hey, it was a pleasure cooking along with you, too! We really, really enjoyed this meal! Yours looks simply luscious. And what a funny little cucumber you've got there! Are you planning on eating that one eventually, or will it just be a conversation piece?

Kayte said...

We loved this meal, thanks for a very nice choice. My guys are meat and potatoes also, so I had to add Giada's Gnocchi to the plate, but it went very nicely with the other parts. Chicken sausage...who knew?? Thanks for that one for sure. Cute little stuck-in-the-fence cucumber. Thanks again, always fun to cook/bake with you.

Liz said...

I'm sorry I didn't make this recipe with you this week, but I did cook another CEiMB recipe (the paella from a few weeks ago). This is a gorgeous looking dish, but I just cannot get myself to like raw tomatoes that much. Beautiful photo :)

Anonymous said...

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AppleC said...

Great dish, Peggy. We loved it and it would have been something I skipped over. Great job. Love the cuke - he's (or she's) very unique!

Leslie said...

Fabulous pick, Peggy! I was very surprised to like this but I loved it. Your cuke and the triple carrot in my farm basket this week belong in a veggie side show! Thanks for hosting this week!

Jennifurla said...

What a crazy cucumber, lovely meal

TeaLady said...

I'm sorry I didn't 'cook' with you this week. I hate fresh maters. Weird huh? Anyway after seeing that some made it without the maters I may have to go back and try this. If I can find the chicken sausage. It was a very colorful pick tho.

Liz said...

Great choice! It made for a great meal.

Pamela said...

We loved this salad, Peggy! I'm definitely going to keep using it through the summer, too. It's so simple and satisfying, that's for sure! Thanks for a delicious pick and a new repeater for me!

Anonymous said...

I am making this for tonight so I have not posted it,yet.

I was going to skip it because, my husband has celiac and I have no extra bread to use for this. I am making my own variation, without bread. Will post this, hopefully, Saturday night.

Thanks for choosing this.

Anonymous said...

Hi there! I came over here from Chaya's blog to check out your delicious salad recipe. Nice to meet you! I will definitely be back!

Mary said...

Great recipe. Great pick. That is the weirdest cucumber ever...I hope it tastes good!

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