Red Amaranth Panzanella

by Anna on May 18, 2010

in Appetizer,Salads,Vegetarian,World Food



Since I started buying my veggies at the Farmer’s Market I have discovered a big variety of things I had never seen before at grocery stores. Without say how fresh everything is. I have used Amaranth before but just the grains, last Sunday at the Hollywood FM I saw this beautiful red and green bunches and when I asked the lady she told me it was red Amaranth. She probably noticed my puzzled face than she said also known as Chinese spinach. Well… say no more…. It looks stunning I have to try it. Now…. Panzanella is my favorite salad ever because if you know anything about me is that I am addicted to bread. So a salad that soaks bread in olive oil and lemon juice, have to be my fave, right? But trust me on that; it would insult the ingredients to use store bought croutons. So I bought a nice crusty Italian bread and cut it into small cubes and then massaged the olive oil, oregano, salt, pepper and the red chili flakes. You’ll see it will be the best croutons you ever had. I also tossed some feta in my salad. But it’s optional. Enjoy.



Red Amaranth Panzanella

  • I bunch of spinach or romaine lettuce
  • 3 tablespoons good olive oil
  • 1 small Italian rustic bread cut into 1-inch cubes (6 cups)
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1 tablespoon of dry oregano
  • 1 teaspoon of red chili flakes
  • Cherry tomatoes
  • 20 large basil leaves, coarsely chopped

For the vinaigrette:

  • 1 teaspoon finely minced garlic
  • 1/2 teaspoon Dijon mustard
  • 3 tablespoons lemon juice
  • 1/2-cup good olive oil
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 2 teaspoons chopped capers, drained


Pre-heat the oven 350F and in a large bowl mix the bread cubes, the olive oil, salt, oregano, and the chili flakes. Toss it to mix it well than cover a baking tray with aluminum foil and spread the bread evenly. Toast it for 5 to 8 minutes or until golden. For the vinaigrette, whisk all the ingredients together. In a large bowl, mix the tomatoes, spinach, and basil. Add the bread cubes and toss with the vinaigrette. Season liberally with salt and pepper.

{ 28 comments… read them below or add one }

Anna May 27, 2010 at 8:25 AM

Oh Nos! Patricia you have to try it, it’s delicious, if you like bread like me, you’ll fall in love. :-D

Patricia Scarpin May 27, 2010 at 5:46 AM

Anna, you probably won’t believe me, but I have never had panzanella before – this is mouthwatering and I know I’m wasting time! :)

Anna May 26, 2010 at 1:34 PM

Oh Jenn, how fun, why you didn’t come too? Tell them to go to the Getty Villa in Malibu, it’s beautiful I just went there last weekend the garden is amazing. :-D

Jenn May 25, 2010 at 3:29 PM

Anna!!! *kisses on cheeks*.
This salad looks so lovely :) I have no idea what amaranth is but I totally want to try it now! My sister and her hubby are currently in Los Angeles maybe I should get them to bring some over… lol… I’m sure I can find it here.
Mmmmm…. massaged olive oil bread. Can there be anything better?? For serious. Btw, your bowls are adorable xoxo
.-= Jenn´s last blog ..Chocolate Pudding =-.

momgateway May 25, 2010 at 6:32 AM

lovely ingredients…lovely dish

Juliana May 24, 2010 at 10:45 AM

Oh Anna, what a beautiful salad…love the pictures as well :-)

kristy May 24, 2010 at 7:13 AM

That spinach also called as amaranth! There are lots of these available here. We normally stir fried it or making soup with it. Something like Mexican wedding soup…light & comforting. Sorry, I don’t eat them raw! hehe… However, your salad looks great. Probably, I’ll boiled the spinach first before adding into the salad. Hope you’ll have a wonderful day, dear!
Blessings, Kristy
.-= kristy´s last blog ..Apple & Banana Coffee Cake =-.

Food Advokat May 23, 2010 at 12:02 PM

Thank you for the post! Your photos are amazing! I have not tried the restaurant you mentioned but will definitely check it out. I say ship in from Titan food!

Looking forward to further exchanges!

sweetlife May 23, 2010 at 11:01 AM

Panzanella is such a wonderful salad, I believe you just improved it, ..I also thought amaranth was only a grain, what a great suprise,lovely pics

.-= sweetlife´s last blog ..Trying a Different Approach..Same Results =-.

Lisa { AuthenticSuburbanGourmet } May 21, 2010 at 7:21 PM

Panzanella is one of my favorite salads and incredibly versatile. Yours looks wonderful and super tasty!
.-= Lisa { AuthenticSuburbanGourmet }´s last blog ..{ Rhone Valley + "Thinking, Eating and Drinking" Part 5 } =-.

Anna May 20, 2010 at 5:29 PM

Thanks Kim, It taste like Spinach just a bit more peppery. ;-)

Kim May 20, 2010 at 6:28 AM

This looks great! I’ve always known amaranth as the grain too, which I eat a lot of. At first that’s what I was expecting to see when I saw the title. I had no idea it was a vegetable too! I hope to try this salad soon!
.-= Kim´s last blog ..Taste Test: Purevia Sweetener =-.

Sommer @ A Spicy Perspective May 20, 2010 at 5:42 AM

Panzanellas are my favorite too–for exactly the same reason! I love the addition of the basil and capers!

zurin May 20, 2010 at 3:58 AM

gorgeous food and fotographs. I LOVE it all! congratulations on the top 9 :) We have plenty of that Chinese spinach here….I usually cook it with sweet potatoes ….it is very good..but perhaps I must try it as your salad one day…very soon i shd think because I just got myself a salad spinner!!!
.-= zurin´s last blog ..FLOWER SUGAR COOKIES ~ A GUEST POST BY PEACE & LIGHT =-.

Lori May 20, 2010 at 3:30 AM

It’s so interesting to see pictures of this. I’ve heard of the leaf version of amaranth, but I was only familiar with the grain/seed as well. The salad looks beautiful and I’m sure your extra effort with the croutons was worth it!
.-= Lori´s last blog ..Travel Secrets eBook for Charity:Water =-.

theUngourmet May 19, 2010 at 5:27 PM

It’s so much fun discovering new things at farmers’ market. I love all of the rich vibrant colors in this salad. It looks delicious! I also love your tomato photo! :)
.-= theUngourmet´s last blog ..Sort of sangria =-.

Stella May 19, 2010 at 12:59 PM

Ooh, I’ve never had panzanella, Anna, but I love it (smile). I can just tell that I do. I’m going to make this over the weekend. Sounds so good…
Hope your sniffles let up soon. I can’t believe it’s cold there. It is steaming here in FL.
.-= Stella´s last blog ..Mazaher Cocktail =-.

Anna May 19, 2010 at 11:23 AM

Thanks Jean, your pan di cioccolato looks delicious. :-)

Anna May 19, 2010 at 11:22 AM

Thanks Marly, loved your tips about blogging. :-D

Anna May 19, 2010 at 11:10 AM

Hi Carolyn, I’m with my fingers crossed. ;-)

Marly May 19, 2010 at 8:33 AM

That salad looks delicious! I love salads, and that one is so colorful. Somehow I think our farmer’s market is not as exotic as yours…
.-= Marly´s last blog ..Tip of the Tongue Syndrome =-.

Carolyn Jung May 19, 2010 at 8:21 AM

I, too, have only recently discovered the joys of amaranth. I really want to try growing some in my backyard, as I hear even a novice gardener like myself should be able to succeed with them. Let’s hope so! ;)

Jean May 19, 2010 at 6:49 AM

This looks beautiful and I’m sure it tasted great. All the components you used for your salad and the dressing are my favorites. I can almost taste it.

Thanks for posting.
.-= Jean´s last blog ..Pan di Cioccolato (Chocolate Bread) =-.

Cherine May 18, 2010 at 10:59 PM

This salad is beautiful and delicious!!
.-= Cherine´s last blog ..Moussaka – the Greek way =-.

Anna May 18, 2010 at 9:00 PM

Thanks Biren, that sounds delicious with garlic stir fry. :-)

Roti n Rice May 18, 2010 at 7:24 PM

I’ve always known this vege as spinach. It’s great in a simple garlic stir-fry. I learn a new name for it today. Your salad looks wonderful! Love the colors!
.-= Roti n Rice´s last blog ..Guest Post: Pandan Cream Pie and Roti’s 100th Post =-.

Erica May 18, 2010 at 6:32 PM

The salad looks beautiful,Anna! Love the dressing….Sounds simple and delicious!

The Cilantropist May 18, 2010 at 5:39 PM

Looks like a winner! I would love to try amaranth, I never have… In fact, I am not even sure I am pronouncing it right (when I say it in my head that is). Either way, gorgeous leaves and a great way to use them.
.-= The Cilantropist´s last blog ..Gratin Dauphinois =-.

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