Autumn Panzanella with Pistachio Vinaigrette

PREP TIME: 20mins


Traditionally made in the summer using ripe tomatoes and stale bread, a panzanella is a delicious Italian salad from the Tuscany region, essentially letting the stale bread soak up the fragrant salad juices.

I am making the most of the colourful abundance of Autumn by roasting the most beautiful Autumn vegetables in lots of olive oil before drizzling them in a zippy pistachio vinaigrette. I picked up colourful bunches of beetroots and rainbow carrots at my local farmers market and Romanesco cauliflower with their pointy grown like tops are the showstopper here!

I am not limiting this dish to ‘salad’ status as it can easily be served as it is, straight from oven as a lovely one tray lunch or supper! See below for serving suggestions.

Getting Ahead: the salad can be served warm or at room temperature and can be made the day before. Just bring to room temperature before serving. The dressing can be made 2 days ahead.

Seasonal Swaps: the perfect use-what-you-have dish. You can swap cauliflower for broccoli, carrots for parsnips and you can use any nut you have for the dressing. I would however suggest roasting the nuts before as it adds so much depth of flavour. As for the 2 cups of greens, you can use what you have, chard, baby spinach and rocket would work well too.

Serving Suggestion:

Serve alongside some yogurt flatbreads, falafel and some freshly made hummus.

Serves 4-6

What you'll need:

2 large baking trays


  • 4 tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 bunches small beetroots (450g), peeled and quartered
  • 1 bunch rainbow carrots, peeled and halved lengthways
  • 1 bunch radishes, leaves removed, scrubbed and halved
  • 1 small cauliflower, broken into florets
  • 4 small shallots, peeled and halved
  • 1 cup kale, stalks removed and finely chopped
  • 1 cup rocket or baby spinach, washed
  • 1/2 loaf Italian ciabatta bread, torn into rough crouton shapes
  • salt & pepper

Pistachio Vinaigrette

  • 1 tablespoon white wine vinegar
  • 2 tablespoons lemon juice
  • 1 tablespoon honey
  • 1/2 cup good olive oil
  • 1/4 cup roasted pistachios, roughly chopped
  • salt & pepper


  1. Preheat the oven to 200c.
  2. Add the bread pieces to a large bowl along with a good drizzle of olive oil, salt and pepper. Mix well and bake on a roasting tray for 7-10minutes until starting to crisp up. TIP: Take care not over-baked the croutons as they will harden as they cool, just slightly crisp is what we are looking for. Remove and set aside.
  3. Divide the beetroot, radishes and carrots between two trays, drizzle with olive oil and season with salt and pepper. Roast for 20 minutes. After 20 minutes add the shallots and cauliflower, mix well and heat for another 20 minutes until all the vegetables are soft and golden.
  4. Meanwhile, add all the dressing ingredients together, taste and season correctly to get the perfect balance between salt, sour and sweet.
  5. Remove the veggies from the oven add the chopped kale and mix well into the roasted veggies, which will provide enough heat to soften the kale. season with salt and pepper.
  6. When you are ready to serve add the vegetables to a large serving dish, add the croutons and drizzle with the half the dressing, toss the salad well and serve with the rest of the dressing on the side. Enjoy!
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