This Italian peasant dish is most often no more than stale bread, tomatoes, and olive oil, but I like adding a little something crunchy and green. It's also a good vehicle for leftover grilled vegetables--like eggplant, zucchini, or mushrooms--or for hard boiled eggs or anchovies. When tomatoes aren't in season, try the dried fruit variation below it.
- 8 ounces whole grain bread (4 thick slices, stale is fine)
- 4 celery stalks or 1 small fennel bulb, thinly sliced
- 1/4 cup olive oil
- 2 Tbsp balsamic vinegar
- 1 1/2 pounds ripe tomatoes, seeded and chopped
- 1/2 red onion, thinly sliced
- Salt and black pepper
- 1/2 cup chopped fresh basil
- Heat the oven to 400 F. Put the bread on a baking sheet and toast, turning once or twice, until golden and dry, about 10-20 minute, depending on the thickness of the slices. Remove from the oven and cool.
- Put the celery, oil, vinegar, tomatoes, and onion in a large salad bowl. Sprinkle with salt and lots of pepper and toss to coat.
- Fill a large bowl with tap water and soak the bread for about 3 minutes. Gently squeeze the slices dry, then crumble them into the salad bowl. Toss well to combine and let sit for 15 to 20 minutes (or up to an hour). Right before serving, taste, adjust the seasoning if necessary, and toss with the basil.
- WHOLE GRAIN BREAD SALAD WITH DRIED FRUIT
- Omit the tomatoes and basil and substitute 2 medium shallots for the onion. In Step 2, toss the celery or fennel and dressing with 1 cup chopped dried fruit (figs, dates, apricots, cherries, cranberries or raisins are all good) and 1 tablespoon chopped fresh sage. Garnish with toasted hazelnuts or almonds.
|Amount Per Serving||%DV|
|Serving Size 265g|
|Recipe makes 4 servings|
|Calories from Fat 153||47%|
|Total Fat 17.26g||22%|
|Saturated Fat 2.82g||11%|
|Trans Fat 0.0g|
|Total Carbs 36.21g||10%|
|Dietary Fiber 3.6g||12%|