Zero waste recipes: panzanella salad with stale bread

Bread is probably the most common scrap in our kitchens. Croutons or breadcrumbs are the perfect way to recycle stale bread, or this Italian salad is great in summer.

panzanella salad
Deirdre Rooney


2 tbsp white wine vinegar
4 stale sourdough bread slices, crusts removed
1 red onion, finely sliced
1 cucumber, sliced
400g ripe mixed tomatoes, roughly chopped
90ml extra virgin olive oil
Bunch of basil leaves, picked
Sea salt and black pepper

  1. Mix 1 tablespoon of the vinegar with 50ml water in a large bowl. Add the bread and leave to soak until soft.
  2. Squeeze the bread to remove any excess liquid, breaking it into rough chunks, then place it in a bowl. Add the onion, cucumber and tomatoes. Toss together with your hands, then stir in the remaining vinegar, the oil and salt and pepper.
  3. Taste and add more seasoning if needed. Tear in the basil leaves, stir together and serve.

Now buy the book

the zero waste cookbookOur recipes are from The Zero Waste Cookbook by Giovanna Torrico and Amelia Wasiliev, published by Hardie Grant, price £16.99. To order a copy for £14.44 until 4 September, go to or call 020 3308 9193. Free UK delivery on orders over £20.