food Program

Panzanella Salad

From Meatless Monday contributor, The Verdant Life

Tomatoes, cucumber, bell pepper, onion and parsley come together in this classic Italian salad. As hearty as it is refreshing, the toasted bread cubes will attract eaters, but the Dijon white balsamic vinaigrette will keep them coming back for more. This recipe comes to us from Cat of The Verdant Life.

Serves 4

For the toasted bread:
4 slices stale bread, cut into 1-inch cubes
1 tablespoon olive oil
14 teaspoon salt
For the veggies:
1 medium tomato, cut into cubes
or 6 cherry tomatoes, halved
1 seedless cucumber, cut into 1/2-inch pieces
1 red bell pepper, seeded and cut into 1-inch pieces
14 onion, sliced
14 cup fresh flat leaf parsley, chopped
For the vinaigrette:
1 clove garlic, minced
14 teaspoon Dijon mustard
1 tablespoon white balsamic vinegar
or 1 tablespoon Champagne vinegar
3 tablespoons olive oil
12 teaspoon salt
14 teaspoon pepper
To make the toasted bread cubes:

Toss the bread cubes together with the olive oil in a heavy skillet over medium low heat.

Season with salt and toast, stirring occasionally, for 4-6 minutes, or until the bread cubes are lightly browned. Set aside.

To prepare the veggies:
Place the tomatoes, cucumber, bell pepper, onion and flat leaf parsley together in a large bowl.

To make the vinaigrette:
Whisk together the minced garlic, Dijon mustard, vinegar and olive oil. Season with salt and pepper.

To complete the Panzanella Salad:
Dress the veggies with as much of the vinaigrette as desired and toss until the dressing is evenly distributed to coat all the veggies. Add the toasted bread cubes and let sit for 20-30 minutes, or until the flavors have melded together.

Divide into 4 portions and enjoy!