Tuscan Panzanella Salad

Tuscan salad

Panzanella is a rustic Italian bread-and-tomato salad! Perfect for Meatless Monday this hearty salad is filling and satisfying!


•    1 (1-pound) loaf ciabatta or other Italian bread, cut into 1-inch cubes
•    1 cup extra-virgin olive oil, divided
•    2 tablespoons red wine vinegar
•    1 teaspoon balsamic vinegar
•    1/4 cup finely chopped shallots
•    1/2 cup loosely packed fresh basil leaves, torn
•    1/2 pound red cherry or grape tomatoes, halved
•    1/2 pound yellow cherry or grape tomatoes, halved
•    Kosher salt
•    Freshly ground white pepper
•    1 small red onion, finely chopped
•    1 garlic clove, minced
•    1 to 1 1/2 teaspoons dried crushed red pepper flakes
•    1 teaspoon fresh rosemary, chopped
•    1 (15-ounce) can cannellini beans, drained and rinsed well
•    1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
•    1 fennel bulb, thinly sliced
•    1/2 pound baby arugula
•    Pecorino cheese, crumbled

1.    Toss bread cubes with 1/4 cup olive oil to coat. Place on a lightly greased baking sheet. Bake at 350° for 15 to 20 minutes, stirring occasionally. Set aside.
2.    Whisk together 6 tablespoons olive oil, red wine vinegar, balsamic vinegar, shallots, and basil. Pour over tomatoes. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Let stand 1 hour.
3.    Sauté red onion, garlic, red pepper flakes, and rosemary in 1/4 cup olive oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat 2 to 3 minutes or until crisp-tender. Stir in beans, and cook until thoroughly heated. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Set aside.
4.    Combine remaining 2 tablespoons olive oil and lemon juice; pour over fennel.
5.    Toss together croutons, marinated tomatoes, bean mixture, fennel, and arugula. Sprinkle with crumbled pecorino, and serve.

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