In the extremely rare case that you have any crusty sourdough left over, Panzanella is a fantastic way to use up any bits of crusts that you have knocking around.
Panzanella is a bread salad that was perfected by the farmers in the Tuscan countryside that uses ingredients that are in their back garden and that ripen wonderfully in the summer months. This classic Italian summer salad seems like it is too simple, too improbable that it is as delicious as it is - but it really is.
The final detail for this dish is giving it a little time to sit before serving - this is the step that is most difficult to do considering you will want to dive right in immediately! - but this is really where the magic happens. There needs to be time for the bread to absorb all the tomato-y chicken juices and for all of the ingredients together to mingle. There's a sweet spot where the bread has softened , but still has a little crunch. Mouthwateringly delicious, this salad is best eaten the same day that it's made.
Handful cherry tomatoes, halved
1 thinly sliced red onion
2 tsp red wine vinegar
Small bunch basil
Good drizzle of Extra Virgin Olive Oil
Stale sourdough, cut into small squares
In a hot heavy based frying pan, add a little cooking oil. To the hot oil, add the chicken thighs skin down and fry for 3-4 minutes or until they are golden and crispy.
Once the skin has turned golden and crispy, turn the thighs over. Add the sourdough to the pan and continue to fry the thighs and sourdough till golden and crispy.
Once they're cooked, remove the chicken and then roughly chop the thighs into 4 pieces. In a bowl, mix the juicy chicken with the crispy sourdough, halved tomatoes, thinly sliced onion, basil, vinegar and a good drizzle of olive oil along with a good pinch of salt.
Leave to sit for a few minutes for the crunchy bread to soak up the wondrous chicken and tomato juices and then serve alongside a fruity rose, like the glorious sparkling NV Rosé from Castlewood.