Sweet Panzanella Recipe

Sweet Panzanella
Difficulty: Easy | Total Time: | Makes: 6 to 8 servings

Give stale bread a sweet new life by toasting it in a butter-sugar mixture. Then toss it with some juicy raspberries in this twist on a traditional bread salad, giving panzanella a place in the dessert course.

Game plan: If you don’t have stale bread on hand, toast the bread cubes in a 300°F oven until they are crisp and dry but not browned, about 15 minutes.

  • 4 tablespoons unsalted butter (1/2 stick)
  • 6 tablespoons packed dark muscovado or dark brown sugar
  • 1/4 teaspoon fine salt
  • 1 (1-pound) loaf stale crusty bread, cut into 1-inch cubes (about 8 to 9 cups)
  • 2 cups fresh raspberries (about 8 ounces)
  • 1 cup pecans, toasted and coarsely chopped
  1. Heat the oven to 350°F and arrange a rack in the middle.
  2. Melt the butter in a large pot over medium heat. Add 4 tablespoons of the sugar and the salt and cook, whisking occasionally, until the sugar dissolves and the mixture begins to bubble, about 8 minutes. Remove from heat.
  3. Add the bread cubes and stir until they are evenly coated in the sugar mixture. Pour the mixture onto a baking sheet and arrange in a single layer.
  4. Bake, stirring every 5 minutes, until the bread cubes are golden brown and toasted, about 15 to 20 minutes total. Place the baking sheet on a wire rack and let the bread cool to room temperature, about 5 minutes.
  5. While the bread is cooling, combine half of the raspberries and the remaining 2 tablespoons sugar in a large bowl and mash with a fork or potato masher until the berries release their juices and are broken up.
  6. Add the bread cubes, pecans, and remaining whole raspberries and gently toss to combine. Serve immediately or refrigerate until ready to serve.