Homemade with Love by Jennifer Perillo

It’s pretty obvious I want to cook a ton recipes from Jennifer Perillo’s new cookbook, Homemade with Love, right? Right off the back, let me just say that you need this book – for every day dinners and special occasions, with recipes for snacks to desserts, Jennifer has outdone herself in this gorgeous book. Gorgeous in both the writing and the recipes included, as well as the magnificent photos by the talented Penny De Los Santos – it doesn’t get any better.

But wait, it does. I was lured into making this Panzanella Salad because of Jennifer’s headnote to the recipe: she used to eat this salad on Cape Cod, in North Truro, with Mikey. And since M and I live on Cape Cod, what better recipe to honor not only the new cookbook, but the memory of Mikey? It was the first time making and actually, ever eating Panzanella salad and I’ll be honest – I ate the entire recipe all by myself, letting M only have a taste. It was THAT good. Now if only I had Jennie’s Peach Blueberry Cobbler for dessert, it would’ve been the perfect end to a deliciously inspired meal.

Below you’ll find three simple recipes that make up this dish, easily put together. I know my croutons look a little light, but I tend to like my croutons not crispy all the way, but a little soft on the inside. But that’s just me, you can toast yours all the way and I’m sure it would be just as tasty. Please be sure to grab a copy of Homemade with Love on Amazon, as well as head over to In Jennie’s Kitchen, a blog filled to the brim with deliciously simple recipes and great stories.

Panzanella Salad

Slow-Roasted Tomato & Fresh Mozzarella Panzanella

A gorgeous salad of crusty cheesy croutons, fresh basil, sweet roasted tomatoes, and juicy mozzarella makes this a meal all on its own.
Print Recipe
IMG 4196



  • 11/2 tablespoons 22 ml extra-virgin olive oil
  • 2 teaspoons 10 ml apple cider vinegar
  • 1 teaspoon 6 grams honey
  • Sea salt flakes I use Maldon and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
  • 2 cups 80 grams Parmesan Skillet Croutons (recipe follows)
  • 3 ounces 84 grams fresh mozzarella, cubed
  • ½ cup 127 grams Slow-Roasted Tomatoes (recipe follows)
  • Handful of fresh basil leaves torn

Parmesan Croutons

  • 2 cups 80 grams cubed day-old baguette
  • 1 teaspoon finely chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley
  • 2 tablespoons 6 grams grated Parmesan cheese
  • Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
  • 1 tablespoon 15 ml extra virgin olive oil

Slow Roasted Tomatoes

  • 1 pint 280 grams grape tomatoes, cut in half
  • ¼ cup 62 ml extra-virgin olive oil
  • Fine sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 6 sprigs fresh lemon thyme chopped


  • To make the dressing, whisk the oil, vinegar, honey, salt, and pepper together in a deep bowl. Adjust seasonings to taste. Add the croutons, mozzarella, tomatoes, and basil to the bowl, tossing well to combine. Let the salad sit for at least 5 minutes so the croutons can absorb the flavors, but no more than 15 minutes or they will get too soggy and lose their crunch. To serve, spoon the salad onto a platter, or individual plates.
  • To make Parmesan Croutons: Toss all of the ingredients together in a bowl until the bread cubes are well coated. Heat an 8-inch (20 cm) skillet over medium heat. Add the seasoned bread cubes to the pan and cook, turning occasionally, until golden all over, 5 to 7 minutes. Store in an airtight container for up to 3 days.
  • To make slow-roasted tomatoes: Preheat oven to 250º F (120ºC). Add all the ingredients to an 8-inch (20-cm) square baking dish and toss well to coat. Adjust seasonings to taste. Bake until the tomatoes are slightly collapsed and tender, about 1 hour. Let cool completely, and store in a tightly covered mason jar or container in the fridge for up to 2 weeks.


Recipe reprinted with permission from HOMEMADE WITH LOVE © 2013 by Jennifer Perillo, Running Press, a member of the Perseus Books Group.
Servings: 2 servings

Disclaimer: I bought this book from Amazon and I suggest you do too! 

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  1. The salad really does sound delicious! How wonderful to see Jennifer has a book out, I love love Penny’s photography!!! 🙂 Thank you for sharing, Hugs, Terra

  2. This salad is simply lovely! I love panzanella salad and I love Jennie’s blog. I’ve been meaning to buy her cookbook. This recipe is a must make!

  3. That sounds wonderful, Marnely! As you know, I love salads that are unusual. When I get a new cookbook, it looks just like yours with all the little colored post-it tabs sticking out. If I don’t win Jenny’s Cookbook Junkie giveaway, I think I will have to break down and buy this beautiful book. I remember reading Jennie’s post when she lost Mikey and then, somehow, I lost track of her blog. Which makes me sad. I have subscribed to her email posts now.