greek panzanella salad

Forgive me, for I have sinned.

I’ve lied.  I’ve lusted.  I’ve gluttonously indulged.

I promised myself (and others) when we started this blog that I wouldn’t share recipes that I’ve taught in any of my cooking classes, nor would I share recipes from our personal chef business.  I wanted the blog to be shiny and new, to stand alone from my other culinary dabbling.

I can’t resist the temptation.

You see, my favorite time of year is here.  I love it when the garden is in full swing and the rainbow of heirloom tomatoes is on display in full spectrum among the vines.  Red, yellow, green, and purple orbs sparkle against the leaves, juicy jewels waiting to adorn the crown of a summer meal.  I anxiously await the moment when tomatoes of all colors stand ripe on my counter.  And when that moment arrives, this salad is one of my must-haves.

A symphony of flavors, this salad calls to me with its siren song.  Juicy tomatoes, cooling cucumber, tangy feta, bright kalamata olives and crunchy garlic ciabatta croutons combine in a myriad of colors, flavors and textures.  Looking like a Jackson Pollack painting with splatters of colors and shapes tossed together in a bowl, it is bold, flavorful, and everything I crave in the heat of late summer.

I literally do a little dance with the first bite.  Try it – you might too!   

greek panzanella salad

recipe:  jb’s pour house

 

1 c. finely diced red onion

2 c. thinly sliced cucumber

1 Tbsp. finely chopped garlic

¼ c. kalamata olives, halved

6 c. diced heirloom tomatoes

1 c. crumbled feta

2 tsp. kosher salt

½ tsp. freshly ground black pepper

3 Tbsp. olive oil

1 lemon, juiced

3 c. cubed ciabatta

2 Tbsp. olive oil

½ tsp. kosher salt

1 large garlic clove, crushed

Combine red onion through lemon juice in a large mixing bowl.  Mix well to combine.  Set aside.  Heat olive oil and garlic over medium heat.  Add salt and ciabatta bread.  Toss well.  Continue to cook over medium heat about 7 minutes, tossing regularly, until bread cubes are golden brown.

If you intend to eat the whole salad in one sitting, combine bread cubes with tomato mixture and toss to combine.  Serve immediately.  If serving for smaller groups and you anticipate leftovers, place about ½ c. bread cubes in a bowl.  Top with about 1 c. tomato mixture and serve immediately.  Reserve bread cubes and tomato mixture separately.

And I promise, I’ll try to be good from now on.

– j

All content and photographs © 2010 jb’s pour house

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