By Brooke Marshall
Market season in Ambler has begun! I thought a great way to kick off the season would be to make a dish using ingredients from as many market vendors as I possibly could. I was inspired by recipes for panzanella, not only because it’s a way to incorporate many market ingredients, but because it’s a perfect dish to transition from the comfort foods of winter to the fresh veggies of spring. Letting go of warmth and coziness is particularly difficult with the endless rain we’ve been experiencing. So topping this panzanella with poached eggs seemed like a great way to hold onto some warmth while getting a taste of the first fresh greens of the season. Enjoy!
FARM MARKET PANZANELLA
From the Ambler Farmers’ Market:
- 1 loaf of baguette bread, cut into 1-inch cubes (Alice Bakery & Confectionary)
- 1 bunch of spring onions, thinly sliced (Pennypack Farm)
- 1 bunch of asparagus, remove tough ends and chop into 1-inch pieces (Clay Brick Farms)
- 1 large box of mixed mushrooms (Crimini, Shiitake, Oyster), roughly chopped (Davidson’s Mushrooms)
- 1 head of romaine lettuce, roughly torn or chopped (Pennypack Farm)
- 1 bag of pea shoots, roughly torn (Pennypack Farm)
- 1 box of sunflower shoots, roughly torn (Taproot Farm)
- 1 block of goat Gouda, cut into 1/4-inch cubes (Apple Tree Goat Dairy Farm)
- Pastured eggs, 1-2 per serving (Taproot Farm)
For the dressing :
- 3 oz (1/4 cup + 2 Tbsp) extra virgin olive oil
- 1 oz (2 Tbsp) red wine vinegar
- 1/4 tsp Dijon mustard
- 2 Tbsp grated Parmesan
- 1 Tbsp fresh chopped basil
- 1 Tbsp fresh chopped chives
- 1 clove garlic, minced
- Salt & pepper to taste
- Make the panzanella dressing. Combine all ingredients in a container with a tight lid. Shake to mix. Set aside or refrigerate if making ahead.
- Preheat oven to 400F. While the oven is preheating, cut the baguette into 1-inch cubes. Lay bread cubes on a large parchment-lined jellyroll pan. Drizzle olive oil over the bread and season with salt and pepper. Toss to coat. Bake bread until crisp (about 6 minutes), removing the pan from the oven once to toss the bread cubes for even toasting. Set aside to cool.
- Heat 1-2 tablespoons of olive oil in a large pan over medium heat. Add the spring onion and cook until the onion is beginning to brown and caramelize (about 12 minutes). Then add the asparagus and mushrooms. Season with salt and pepper. Sauté until the asparagus is bright green and the mushrooms are tender (3-4 more minutes). Transfer to a small bowl to cool.
- Combine romaine, pea shoots, sunflower shoots, and goat Gouda in a large mixing bowl. Transfer toasted bread to the mixing bowl. Add asparagus mixture. Drizzle a little dressing over the panzanella and toss to coat. Continue to add dressing and toss the panzanella making sure not to over-dress it so that the panzanella won’t be soggy when you add the poached eggs.
- Let the panzanella meld while poaching 1-2 eggs/serving to top the panzanella. Scoop the panzanella into bowls when the eggs are almost done. Top each bowl with 1-2 poached eggs. Sprinkle with salt and pepper to taste.
Brooke Marshall is a market volunteer, Ambler socialite and overall good egg. This season she will be the market’s resident locavore, turning market proceeds into culinary delights. If you see her at market, say hello. And if you make one of her recipes, bring it to market for her approval. Only kidding about the last part.