Summer Panzanella

Lately I’ve been thinking about things I’m glad I did. And I’m sorry for the complete randomness of this post, but my brain may not be functioning properly due to current circumstances…

I’m glad I put the whale decal next to Ellie’s changing table. I thought it looked weird at first, but she LOVES to stare at it every time I change her and it definitely makes that whole process easier.

I’m glad I finally went to the California Academy of Sciences, which I’ve been meaning to do FOREVER. Penguins are my favorite animal of all time, and I could seriously watch them for hours. I hope Ellie shares my affinity for these little birds because I can’t wait to show them to her.

I’m glad I stayed active during my pregnancy. I don’t think recovery from birth would be this easy if I hadn’t, and I’ve already lost over 2/3 of the weight I put on! Plus I can’t wait until I can tell Ellie about the races we ran together.

I’m glad I finally got around to making Panzanella this summer! I love this stuff so much, and it’s an absolutely perfect way to highlight fresh tomatoes. I add some white beans for extra protein, and keep it pretty simple by just tossing everything with a little garlic, fresh oregano, red wine vinegar, and olive oil.

I realize it might seem a little ridiculous to be posting this now, but this is when summer FINALLY arrives around here, so I’m not willing to give into pumpkin and apples and chili yet!

4 cups 1″ day-old bread cubes (ciabatta works well)
3 medium tomatoes, diced
1/2 red onion, thinly sliced into half-moons
1 red bell pepper, seeded and diced
3 tbsp olive oil
2-3 tbsp red wine vinegar
2 cloves garlic, finely minced
1 tbsp chopped fresh oregano
1 1/2 cups white beans, rinsed and drained
salt and pepper to taste

Spread the bread cubes evenly on a baking sheet and toast in a 350 degree oven until golden and slightly crisp (10-15 minutes).

Toss the tomatoes, onions, bell pepper, oregano, and garlic together in a large bowl, then add the oil and vinegar. Stir in the white beans, then the bread, and mix well. Add salt and pepper to taste, and more oil or vinegar if needed.

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