May 29, 2014

In the Kitchen: Spring Panzanella Salad

Last summer I became obsessed with Ina Garten's Panzanella Salad. It was an easy side dish or light lunch that could be thrown together easily. Last week, I found myself craving this salad, but sadly summer fruits and vegetables are not in season here. So, I whipped together a spring version and it satisfied my craving. The crisp asparagus, radishes, and leeks pair perfectly with the tender spinach and crunchy croutons. Try this salad for your next backyard bbq. I promise you won't be disappointed. 

Spring Panzanella Salad

1 ciabatta roll, cubed
1/2 bunch asparagus
1 leek
1/2 bunch radishes
4 cups baby spinach
1/2 cup olive oil
1 teaspoon dijon mustard
1 garlic clove
1/8 cup white wine vinegar
1/2 lemon, juiced

Preheat oven to 425 degrees. Toss cubed ciabatta with a little olive oil, salt, and pepper in a roasting pan. Bake for 10 minutes, flipping once until golden brown. Set aside to cool.

Fill a small saucepan with water and bring to a boil. Cut asparagus into 1 inch pieces. Blanch for about 1 minute until bright green. Immediately place in an ice bath and allow to cool.

Toss asparagus, radishes, leeks, and baby spinach in a large salad bowl.

In a small mixing bowl, whisk together white wine vinegar, lemon juice, garlic, dijon mustard, and a little salt and pepper. Slowly whisk in olive oil until combined. Drizzle over salad into moistened. Add croutons. Server immediately. 

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