To Italians, this constitutes a salad….lololol! Just replace the lettuce or anything green with a baguette, and voila! A Salad in Italy! I’m not making fun either, this is truly my idea of a salad. A variety of great, rich flavours mixed with buttery carbs; you really can’t go wrong. Only one question remains….Why don’t I live in Italy?
This recipe is from a cooking class I did in the fall, and I couldn’t wait to make it again. It did not disappoint the second time around. Start with the carbs! Cut a baguette up into chunks and prep your dressing. (Rosemary, garlic, olive oil, butter, etc.)
Add a generous heap of fresh Parmesan to the baguette cubes.
Mix in the dressing and stir until evenly combined. Bake @ 350 until golden and crusty.
Mix the veggies, cheese and croutons together in a bowl, and then whip up the salad dressing.
Add the dressing right before serving to make sure the croutons don’t get soggy. The only thing missing from this “salad” that I would add next time would be artichokes.
Panzanella Salad Recipe
1 batch freshly baked croutons (Recipe below)
4 red peppers (roasted if you like!)
8 vine ripened tomatoes, cubed
1 bunch fresh basil, chopped
2 large balls fresh buffalo mozzarella torn into small bite size pieces
1 red onion sliced finely
1 cup chopped marinated artichoke hearts
1 cup olive oil
1/3 cup balsamic vinegar
Salt and pepper to taste
1 tbsp brown sugar
1 lemon zest
1. Combine the prepared vegetables together (peppers, tomatoes, onions, basil and artichokes) in a large mixing bowl.
2. Combine the oil, vinegar, sugar, salt and pepper and lemon zest. Whisk to thoroughly combine all ingredients.
3. Place croutons (still warm if possible!) in the bowl with the vegetables and cheese, and lightly toss with dressing. Check the seasoning and adjust if necessary.
1-2 good quality baguettes
1/8 cup olive oil
1/8 cup butter
4 sticks fresh thyme or rosemary
Salt and pepper
3 cloves garlic
¼ cup grated Parmesan or other hard cheese
1. Preheat oven to 350 F.
2. Cut the baguette into large cubes and toss with salt and pepper, crushed whole garlic cloves, picked thyme/rosemary, butter and olive oil.
3. Place the croutons in oven until they become golden but are still soft in the middle.