Thursday, September 30, 2010

Nature's Pride, Take 2

Thank you all for your votes, they mean so very much!!   Voting ends today, so there's still some time to vote for my Saag Paneer :)

Last year's savory pumpkin bread pudding was better than I could've imagined.   Not only was it delicious, but it gave me the opportunity to attend the 1st Annual Foodbuzz Festival.  It was an amazing experience where I met many awesome fellow bloggers, ate tons of amazing food, fell in love with the Ferry Building and demo my recipe for everyone to try!

This year I'm at it again, submitting a recipe for the chance to be named a Nature's Pride bread ambassador again.  Hopefully this will be another golden ticket :)

Imagine some feta sprinkled on top!

Eggplant Panzanella
Recipe by Shannon
Serves 2-3 as a side, easily scaled up

Panzanella, or bread salad, seemed like a perfect way to highlight Nature's Pride bread.  I kept the bread crispy to contrast with the creamy roasted eggplant.  The feta balances the sweet dressing to create a twist on this Tuscan classic.  

2c Nature's Pride bread cubes  (~1/2" in size, from 2 slices of Whole Wheat*)
4c cubed eggplant (~3/4" in size, skin on or off-- your choice)
2-3T extra virgin olive oil
coarse salt
fresh ground pepper
1 1/2c cucumber slices (peeled, seeded and halved)
1 1/2c halved grape or pear tomatoes  (quartered if they're very large)
1/3c thinly sliced shallots (from 1-2 large or a few smaller ones)
1/3-1/2c crumbled feta

For the miso honey dressing:
1/2T white miso
1/2T honey
1T rice wine vinegar
1/2T extra virgin olive oil
2-3 grinds of fresh pepper

Preheat oven to 350deg. 

Add eggplant to a large bowl and toss with 1-2T olive oil, salt and pepper.  The eggplant can absorb alot of liquid, so don't be afraid to add a little more oil if things look really dry.  Arrange in a single layer on a cookie sheet (or two, depending on the size).  Bake for 20min or so, flipping over after about 10min.  Reserve the bowl for assembling the panzanella.

Arrange bread cubes on another baking sheet, drizzle with a little olive oil (or spray with nonstick spray) and bake until browned and crispy, about 10min (I put these in when I tossed the eggplant cubes).  Remove from oven and let cool.

In a small bowl, combine miso and honey.  Warm slightly in the microwave, just 5-10 seconds.  Add remaining ingredients and whisk well.  In the large bowl, combine dressing, eggplant, cucumber, tomato and red onion and combine well.   This can be prepared ahead of time, just refrigerate until ready to use.

Just before serving, combine toasted bread cubes with vegetable mixture and top with feta before digging in!!  The longer it sits, the bread cubes will soften...  not necessarily a bad thing as it's absorbing the dressing, but you will lose some of the textural appeal :)

*As part of the Foodbuzz Tastmaker program, I received a coupon for a free loaf of Nature's Pride bread.


R3 Method Show said...

I'm ALWAYS looking for new ways to have fun with eggplant. Thank u!

Fun and Fearless in Beantown said...

This looks really delicious! I recently saw a recipe for pumpkin bread pudding in my new King Arthur Flour Whole Grain Baking cookbook and I'm planning to make it for Thanksgiving! Good luck with this contest!

brandi said...

Yum - this looks great Shannon! Good luck :) I'm crossing my fingers for you!

♥peachkins♥ said...

Oh my!This looks fantastic...

Ricki said...

What an innovative recipe! I'm sure I'd love eggplant this way. . .always looking for new ways with it. Good luck with the competition (you definitely have my vote!) :D

Lauren said...

You are the Nature's Pride Queen! Panzanella is such a fun way to enjoy good bread, and I love that you paired it with eggplant. Yum!

Delicious Dishings said...

Wow Shannon. This sounds incredible! And it's super-creative. Good luck!

Joanne said...

Mega good luck chica! That honey miso dressing sounds out of this world! I think you're a shoe in.

Natalie said...

This was a FABULOUS idea!! good luck!

sheryl said...

Wonderful recipe. This gives me new idea on how I can create a yummy dish out of eggplants. Thank you for sharing this recipe.

Reeni said...

That looks absolutely delicious Shannon! I hope you win!

Biz said...


Unknown said...

OH I love this recipe. SO creative! Eggplant is a favorite. Good luck!!

Jess said...

Eggplant panzanella sounds amazing. Bread and eggplant in one salad? Was it made just for me?

Kerstin said...

Looks like this turned out perfectly :) Such a great twist on panzanella - good luck!

Allison said...

Everything looks yummy- great job!

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