Pan Bagna for lunch

The Three Graces

The Three Graces 1993, pastel on paper, 31 1/2 x 35 1/2 inches   (A picnic on Bald Mountain with Zoë, Phoebe and Theo)


Yesterday I harvested lots of tomatoes.  Finally.  I hope the remaining green/yellow ones ripen soon as we expect cooler temps later this week. Fall is surely here.

tomato harvest 2

In the morning, as I  practiced tai chi, the memory of delicious, messy pan bagna sandwiches floated among my random thoughts.  In the past, I had taken these succulent sandwiches on picnics, their savory, oily goodness wrapped in wax paper and foil.  I decided to prepare them for our lunch using some of the sweet, ripe tomatoes I had picked.

I hurried into the kitchen after I finished my exercise, knowing the pan bagna needed a few hours to marinate.  I sliced, then chopped a couple largish tomatoes, added a crushed clove of garlic, a good handful of chopped basil, a big pinch of salt and a splash of olive oil.


Then I crumbled a tin of tuna into the mixture with a few grinds of black pepper.

tomatoes and tuna

I had ready a fresh baguette from the St. Vrain Market.  I cut it in half  then cut the half horizontally,  removing some of the crumb to make a depression into which went the tomato/tuna mixture. I pressed the top half of the baguette over this, squishing it firmly, and set the sandwich on my cutting board with another board on top.  I weighted this with an unopened bottle of olive oil.


The concoction sat for a few hours until lunch time when I cut the half loaf into 2 inch slices. Garnished with a green salad, lunch was served.

pan bagna

This may be prepared a day in advance, wrapped, weighted and placed in the fridge. Other fillings might include cucumbers, roasted red peppers, anchovies, artichokes, olives …..


2 thoughts on “Pan Bagna for lunch

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