American Walla Walla Onions Salad with Grilled Shrimp Bread Recipe

In many cultures where food traditions were formed in the midst of extreme poverty, there is much ingenuity in the use of stale bread. Panzanella, a Tuscan salad of stale bread soaked in water, drained and disposed of with a diverse mix of ingredients, was created in that spirit. This version, which includes shrimp, would be home in the menu of any contemporary American bread recipe.

  • 1 / 2 cup extra virgin olive oil, divided
  • 1 / 2 cup Italian parsley (flat sheets), lightly packed
  • 1 / 2 cup shaved pecorino cheese (use vegetable peeler)
  • 1 / 2 cup teaspoon minced garlic
  • 1 / 4 cup fresh mint leaves, lightly packed
  • 1 / 4 cup toasted pine nuts *
  • 1 pound large shrimp, peeled and grilled
  • 2-3 slices of bread a day campaign-style
  • 4 or 5 tablespoons of good red wine vinegar
  • A medium Walla Walla sweet onion, julienned
  • Coarse salt and ground pepper and sea

* To toast nuts, heat a dry skillet over medium heat until beginning to brown. Stir occasionally. Be careful not to roast them.

  1. Preheat oven to 325 degrees F.
  2. Shred the bread irregular bite-size pieces, until you get 2 cups and place in a bowl.
  3. Heat 1 / 4 cup of olive oil and garlic in a skillet over medium heat until the garlic is a lively, but not brown, about 3 minutes. Pour garlic and olive oil on bread, hand-launched a cookie sheet and toast, and 10-15 minutes, or until crispy on the edges and soft in the middle.
  4. Place the toasted bread in a large bowl and mix with onion, vinegar, oil remains oil 1 / 4 cup olive oil, parsley, mint, salt and pepper. 
    • NOTE: This dish improves after being at room temperature. Do not allow more than two hours.
  5. Just before serving, grilled shrimp with a brush with olive oil, season to taste with salt and pepper and place on hot grill for 2 minutes each side or until shrimp curl.
  6. Arrange salad mixture to a large plate of family type and garnish with pine nuts, grilled shrimp and shaved pecorino.

Yield: 4 servings.

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