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Summer Panzanella Salad

Summer Panzanella Salad
  • Prep 10 min
  • Total 4 hr 10 min
  • Servings 4

Cubes of bread and fresh mozzarella round out this summery vegetarian salad. ...MORE+ LESS-

Girl Versus Dough
October 4, 2017

Ingredients

4
cups cubed day-old bread or fresh bread, toasted*
4
cups cherry tomatoes, halved
1
large cucumber, seeded and cut into large chunks
1/2
large red onion or 1 small red onion, chopped
1
bunch fresh basil, torn into pieces
1/4
cup quality olive oil
Salt and pepper to taste
1/2
cup balsamic vinegar
8
oz fresh mozzarella, cut into cubes, or mozzarella pearls

Steps

Hide Images
  • 1
    To toast fresh bread: Preheat oven to 350°F. Place cubed bread on a large rimmed baking sheet. Toast bread in oven 5 to 10 minutes or until just barely toasted and no longer soft. Remove from oven and allow to cool before tossing with remaining ingredients.
  • 2
    In a large bowl, toss bread, tomatoes, cucumber, onion, basil, olive oil, salt and pepper until just combined. Let sit 4 hours at room temperature to marinate.
  • 3
    In a small saucepan over high heat, bring balsamic vinegar to a boil. Reduce heat to a very low simmer and cook vinegar for 10 to 15 minutes until the liquid reduces by half and is syrupy. Remove from heat and set aside.
  • 4
    Toss mozzarella cubes with salad; serve immediately drizzled with balsamic reduction.
 

Nutrition Information

No nutrition information available for this recipe
More About This Recipe
  • When I finally have my first backyard garden, I’m going to build it around this Summer Panzanella Salad. You think I’m kidding. But when you take one bite of this unbelievable deliciousness – chock-full of fresh veggies like cucumber, red onion, cherry tomatoes and fresh basil tossed with bread, cheese, olive oil, balsamic vinegar and magic – you’ll understand. It’s all I need in this world to make me happy (well, that and coffee). This salad originally was born out of a mistake, as many good things are. But I have to say, I’m glad it happened! Because otherwise, I wouldn’t know the wonder that is a panzanella salad, often made with stale bread and fresh tomatoes soaked in olive oil and tossed with veggies. I added a little fresh mozzarella cheese, basil and a balsamic vinegar reduction for a caprese-ish feel, and that was the End of Life As I Knew It. From then on, this salad would be a staple in my summer menu. And it never gets old (well, the bread does, but that’s the point. ANYWAY…). What I love most about this recipe is how substantial it is, but with very little effort. It’s the kind of recipe that’s custom-made for summer: No-cook, no-fuss and celebrates all the fresh flavors of the season. You can serve it as a main dish and even the staunchest salad-haters will probably turn into salad softies after one bite, but it also pairs well as a side dish to a light dinner. As for those who love salad anyway, well, welcome to salad nirvana. There’s no turning back now. You might as well start building that garden, too.

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