Roasted Panzanella Salad

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I haven’t participated in our monthly recipe swaps, hosted by A Taste of Home Cooking, in a few months so I’m excited to be able to participate again for the month of September.  Our theme this month was blogger’s choice which is always a favorite of mine.  I love being able to look through another food blog and find something that I really want to make.

This month I had the blog My Chicago Kitchen which is written by Angie.  She has a ton of wonderful recipes on her blog and was it difficult to just choose one.  However, when I came across a recipe for Panzanella I had to make it.  This is one of those dishes I’ve never made but I’ve always wanted to.  It’s so simple I’m not sure why I haven’t made it before but I’m glad I did now.

The salad consists of colored peppers and onions roasted in the oven and then tossed with other vegetables and a vinaigrette dressing.  While Angie just used croutons in hers I went the traditional route and fried some bread croutons that I made myself.  It was delicious and both my husband and I thought it was filling enough for dinner.

Roasted Panzanella Salad (adapted from My Chicago Kitchen)
For the dressing:
3 garlic cloves, minced
1 t. Dijon mustard
2 T. red wine vinegar
1/4 c. olive oil
1 t. Kosher salt
1 t. fresh ground black pepper

For the salad:
1/2 seedless cucumber, unpeeled, sliced 1/2-inch thick
1 large ripe tomato, cut into 1-inch cubes
1 T. chopped oregano
3 tablespoons capers, drained
3 T. black olives, pitted
1 T. parsley, chopped
4 c. mixed greens
2 T. olive oil
1/2 red onion, sliced into 1/4 inch rounds
1/2 white onion, sliced into 1/4 inch rounds
1 red bell pepper, cut into 1 inch strips
1 yellow bell pepper, cut into 1 inch strips
1 green bell pepper, cut into 1 inch strips
1/2 c. cheese (I used Parmesan and White Cheddar)

For the fried bread:
2 T. butter
1 t. kosher salt
1 t. black pepper
2 garlic cloves, minced
4 slices of Italian bread, cut into 1 inch cubes

1.  Combine all the ingredients for the dressing and whisk until combined.  refrigerate until ready to use.

2.  In a large bowl combine the cucumber, tomato, oregano, capers, parsley, and mixed greens.  Toss well to combine.

3.  Place the onions and bell peppers on a baking sheet a drizzle with the olive oil.  Roast for 20 minutes or until the peppers and onions have softened.  Remove from oven and allow to cool for 5-10 minutes.

4.  Meanwhile, melt the butter in a skillet.  Add the Italian bread cubes and toss to coat with butter.  Sprinkle with salt and pepper then add the garlic.  Continue flipping the bread until it has browned on all sides.

5.  Lay the peppers and onions on top of the mixed greens salad and then sprinkle with the cheese and fried bread.  Serve with the dressing on the side.


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