Zia (Aunt) Filamina’s Panzanella

September 23, 2010

Since Oktoberfest is an iconic autumn festival, I asked Chef Prato to develop some dishes based upon traditional German fare, but also reminiscent of items on the menu at Dianne’s. Recalling the time he spent in Deutschland, it didn’t take him long to jot down some “Italianized” versions of two German classics: schweinshaxe (pork shank) and wiener schnitzel (veal), accompanied by some of his Italian family’s favorites.

Zia (Aunt) Filamina’s Panzanella – a hearty, economic Tuscan salad utilizing leftover bread (serves 1-2)


  • ½ cup roasted red peppers
  • ½ cup roasted yellow peppers
  • 1 cucumber – large dice
  • 6 ripe Roma tomatoes – sliced into rings
  • ½ cup Italian style olives – pitted
  • ½ cup fresh basil – chopped
  • ½ loaf rustic Italian bread – torn into bite-sized chunks
  • 12 mozzarella ciliegine (cherry-sized mozzarella balls)
  • 1 oz olive oil
  • granulated garlic to taste
  • salt & pepper to taste


Brush bread chunks with olive oil and granulated garlic. Toast approx. 30 minutes in a 350 degree oven or until golden brown. In a large bowl, add all ingredients and toss with red wine vinaigrette (see recipe below). Serve at room temperature. Shaved parmesan or asiago cheese may be added to enhance flavor.

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