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Panzanella & Sausage Bake

Submitted by: | Source: Lisa Speer (pbcook)

Panzanella and Sausage Bake
2012-09-25 Other
4.5 2

Panzanella is a classic Italian salad made with soaked stale bread cubes and ripe tomatoes. Italian sausage is a delicious addition to this easy to prepare panzanella-inspired casserole, made with ciabatta bread, flavored tomatoes and fresh basil.

  • Servings: 6
  • Prep Time: 15 minutes
  • Cook Time: 70 minutes
  • Total Time: 85 minutes


1½ Tbsp Plus 1 Teaspoon Extra Virgin Olive Oil, divided, plus more for oiling dish
3 Links Mild Italian Sausage
1 Small Sweet Onion, peeled and diced
1 Tbsp Balsamic Vinegar
½ tsp Salt
¼ tsp Freshly Ground Black Pepper
2 cloves Garlic, minced or pressed
¼ cup Chopped Fresh Basil Leaves
1 (28 Ounce) Can Diced Tomatoes With Basil, garlic and oregano, undrained
4 cups Cubed Ciabatta Bread, slightly stale or lightly toasted
½ cup Grated Parmesan Cheese, plus more for serving


Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Coat the interior of one 2.5 quart baking dish lightly with oil.

Heat 1 teaspoon oil in a medium nonstick skillet over medium heat; add sausages. Cook, turning as needed, until sausages are cooked through and browned well on all sides. Transfer sausages to a cutting surface; add remaining oil, onion, vinegar, salt and pepper to skillet. Cook, stirring occasionally, until onion is tender. Add garlic; stir 10 seconds. Remove from heat; stir in basil.

Slice sausages into 1/2-inch pieces; place in a large bowl. Add onion mixture, tomatoes, bread cubes and parmesan; stir until well mixed. Spoon into prepared baking dish; bake 45 minutes. Allow to stand 10 minutes; serve sprinkled with additional parmesan.

Helpful Tips:

This dish is like a savory bread pudding, and has quite a moist texture. For best results, bake in a round, deep 2.5 quart baking dish (a quiche dish is perfect). If using a shallow dish, reduce baking time.