Italian Panzanella Salad

Easy
Serves 6
Ingredients: 

1 loaf Kowalski's Italian Bread

3 tbsp. Kowalski's Extra Virgin Olive Oil

1 1/2 lbs. Roma tomatoes, sliced (3 cups)

1/2 English cucumber, scored, sliced

1/2 yellow bell pepper, cut into julienne strips

1/2 cup Vidalia onion slices

1/4 cup slivered fresh basil leaves

1/2 cup Kowalski's Extra Virgin Olive Oil

3 tbsp. balsamic vinegar

1 tsp. kosher salt

1/2 tsp. coarse ground black pepper

1/4 cup pecorino cheese, shaved

Instructions: 

Trim ends off of bread; cut remainder of loaf into 1" cubes. In large bowl, drizzle 3 tbsp. olive oil over bread cubes, tossing to coat. Spread in a single layer on a baking sheet; bake in a preheated 350° oven until browned and crisp, rearranging to evenly brown (about 25 min.). In a large bowl, combine tomatoes, cucumber, peppers, onions, basil, 1/2 cup olive oil, balsamic vinegar, salt and pepper. Add croutons, tossing to completely combine. Sprinkle with cheese. Serve immediately.

Good to Know:

  • To score cucumber, place cut end on counter; starting at the opposite end, pull fork down skin repeating around entire cucumber.
  • To make basil slivers, layer several leaves on top of each other; roll tightly. Using a kitchen scissors, cut crosswise along the length of the basil leaves.
  • To shave cheese, use a vegetable peeler to make wide strips.