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Everything but the Farmer Farmers’ Market Corn Salad

Everything but the Farmer Farmers’ Market Corn Salad

There’s still time to lend an ear, grab an ear, shuck an ear, do what you must…to make this peak-of-the-season fresh corn salad that was on the menu at last week’s Summer Harvest Bounty feast. I have shared this recipe before and while it’s a no-recipe recipe, I’ve been ask to fill in some blanks. 

Farmers Market Fresh Corn Salad

Nothing is better than late summer tomatoes and corn. Local farmers here in west Michigan know that I am a bit of a fiend when it comes to sourcing products. I have been known to hit four different markets and source my meal from half a dozen farmers in any given week. So much for reducing the carbon footprint from eating local. Gotta have corn from Ham Family Farm. Arugula only from Grandson’s Garden. (Don’t miss the world’s best $2 pot scrubber from 9-year-old weaver Liam!) Bacon from Creswick Farms (THEY have zero carbon footprint). Organic salad mix with nasturtium blossoms from Summer Blend Gardens. And don’t get me started on Laughing Tree Bakery breads. For the love of all that’s sacred, Charlie and Hilde, make more Elbridge Parmesan Olive bread!! It gets a little competitive most Saturdays.
Fresh Picked CornWith all that commitment to sourcing ingredients, who has time to follow a recipe? Truthfully I am a bit ambivalent about recipes. I think there is nothing sweeter than a well-tested recipe that works every time. They are worth their weight in culinary gold. (I’m talking about salt, people!) However, this time of year and with perfect ingredients, they can get in the way. There are no right or wrong ingredients for this dish. And no right or wrong amounts. What’s in season? What’s picked at the peak of perfection? What sounds good today?? But for those that prefer it, I have updated this recipe to show how I make it. You do you; I’ll do me.

Heirloom Tomatoes

Fresh Corn Salad – Yes, Please!

My go-to must-haves for this corn salad are always the basics – obvs corn and tomatoes. And I almost always include tomatillos. The grilled or roasted tomatillos provide the acid, and the bacon and avocados provide the fat, thereby eliminating the need for a dressing.  It’s a self dressing salad – pure genius!!!  The rest of the ingredients always vary and the proportions are flexible to taste. You can assemble all the ingredients except for greens and bacon well in advance.  Just toss the more fragile ingredients in at serving time and don’t overmix – I love the big chunky pieces of corn cut from the cob. It tells everyone you got your hands dirty.  That makes it taste so much better. What are you waiting for?

Farmstand Basil

As always, check the seasonings. If anything, I usually grab a generous sprinkle of smoked serrano salt. That’s salt and pepper in one-stop shopping – almost as brilliant as the self-dressing salad. Or Maldon salt – my flaky favorite. Fresh cracked pepper. Done.

IF by some miracle you have leftover corn salad, it makes a fabulous addition to a quesadilla.  But more than likely, you too will have a guest that grabbed the serving bowl and polished it off using a giant serving spoon. 🙂

Hey hey hey – I said everything BUT the farmer. 
But anyway here’s my corn guy from Ham Family Farm – always good for a recipe or produce update.

Corn and the Farmer

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Farmers Market Fresh Corn Salad with tomatillos, avocado, and microgreens

Everything but the Farmer Farmers’ Market Corn Salad


  • Author: Katy Keck
  • Total Time: 35 minutes
  • Yield: Serves 8. 1x

Description

This farmers’ market fresh corn salad is a real crowd pleaser. Serve it when corn and tomatoes are at their peak, or sub out for other in-season ingredients.


Ingredients

Scale
  • 4 tomatillos, husked and thrown on a hot grill until charred; chopped when cool
  • 4 cobs of corn, shucked, rubbed with a little olive oil, then grilled until a bit of color; cut from the cob
  • 3 scallions, sliced thinly
  • 2 Tablespoons peppadew peppers, or other brined spicy peppers, chopped
  • 1 poblano pepper, charred over a hot grill, then sweat and peeled; discard seeds and chop
  • 1 avocado, chopped
  • 1 cup halved cherry heirloom tomatoes or chopped larger tomatoes
  • 4 pieces crispy bacon, crumbled
  • 2 cups arugula, whole leaves if small, otherwise coarsely torn
  • 2 Tablespoons fresh basil, chopped

Instructions

Prepare all ingredients per details above.

Combine all ingredients in a mixing bowl, adding the bacon, arugula and basil when you are ready to serve. Gently stir to toss, keeping the corn chunks intact.

Check seasonings, adding salt and pepper, if needed.

Notes

Leftovers are fantastic in a quesadilla or omelette. 

  • Prep Time: 25 minutes
  • Cook Time: 10 minutes
  • Category: Salad
  • Method: Grilling
  • Cuisine: American

Keywords: corn salad

Everything but the Farmer

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Skillet-Burst Tomato & Corn Pasta

Skillet-Burst Tomato & Corn Pasta

Fresh Mozzarella, Tomato & Corn Pasta

This late summer quick and easy pasta dish needs no introduction – corn, tomatoes, and summer squash? Why, hello friends! Welcome!! In a word – YUM! I found myself with a zucchini/tomato bounty post farmer’s market and wanted to whip up something that screams, “I see you Indian summer and I beg you to stay.”

There’s always so much to do this time of year, so why waste time getting dinner on the table? I say that it takes 25 minutes in the notes below, but that is really for the non-multi-tasker. If you get that water boiling first, start your sauté, drop the pasta, and add the veggies to the tomatoes, all while sipping a nice glass of vino, you will be done in far less time. Or at least you won’t notice. This dish is inspired by those that want no fuss, yet full flavor. Skillet-burst tomato & corn pasta has got your back. 

Picking the Produce

Was your sweet corn as amazing as mine this summer? Dutch Love, Silver Queen, Peaches & Cream! Yes, please!! I am partial to the white corn, but the key to me is tiny kernels, sweet enough and oh-so-tender that you can eat it raw.

But corn shopping can get competitive where I come from. It might not be at the market by 8:15, because they are still picking, and by 9:15 you might be disappointed. A total shut out. Thanks to Ham Family Farm and my really pointy elbows, I was corn-endowed all season. Do you remember Everything But the Farmer Farmer’s Market Salad? Same joint. That is a salad that is also epic this time of year. And as long as you are buying tomatoes, buy extra and put up a batch of oven-dried tomatoes. You will thank me all winter. 

Corn and Tomatoes

Skillet-Burst Tomato & Corn Pasta

To get started, drop the cherry and grape tomatoes – I love heirlooms for their gorgeous hues – into a sauté pan with garlic. Whirl the pan to coat the tomatoes with the EVOO and sizzle til they start to char and burst. Add the summer squash and cook until caramelized.

Thyme-Scented Veggie Saute

Toss in some corn, arugula, and seasonings, then add the al dente-cooked pasta and Parmesan. I am using rigatoni here, but any short-cut shape will do. Divide among bowls, top with hand-torn fresh Mozzarella and fresh basil. As always, check the seasoning. I like to use a finishing salt like Maldon, and of course some fresh pepper or hot pepper flakes. 

Adding Pasta to the Veggie Saute

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Close up of Skillet Burst Tomatoes Pasta with Fresh Mozzarella in a black bowl with opal basil

Skillet Burst Tomato & Corn Pasta


  • Author: Katy Keck
  • Total Time: 25 minutes
  • Yield: Serves 6

Description

This late summer quick and easy skillet-burst tomato & corn pasta dish needs no introduction. Corn? Tomatoes? Summer squash? Why, hello friends! Welcome!! This dish highlights the bounty of late summer produce. Tumble onto a bed of pasta, shred some fresh mozzarella, garnish with basil, and you have yourself a feast. 


Ingredients

Scale
  • 2 Tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • 4 cloves garlic, smashed
  • 4 cups heirloom cherry tomatoes, about 1 1/2 pounds
  • 3 sprigs fresh thyme
  • Pinch of salt and pepper
  • 1 1/2 pounds summer squash, about 8 extra small, trimmed and sliced (if using larger squash, cut into half-moons)
  • 1-pound rigatoni, or another short-cut pasta
  • 3 Tablespoons butter
  • 2 ears of fresh corn, cut from the cob
  • 1 cup thinly sliced arugula
  • Red pepper flakes to taste
  • 1/2 cup grated Parmesan
  • 2 balls fresh Mozzarella
  • 2 Tablespoons thinly sliced basil (chiffonade)
  • Finish with Maldon sea salt or other flaky finishing salt

Instructions

Heat olive oil over medium-high heat in a large sauté pan. Add garlic, tomatoes and thyme, and season with salt and pepper. Stir to coat the tomatoes, smashing garlic further. After 6 minutes, add the summer squash, stirring occasionally. Cook for an additional 5 or 6 minutes until the summer squash start to brown and caramelize.

Meanwhile bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Add the pasta and cook until al dente, according to the package instructions, about 12 minutes.

Turn the heat down to low on the sauté pan, and stir in butter, corn, arugula and season with red pepper flakes. Cook for three minutes, scrapping up the brown bits from the bottom of the pan. Remove the thyme.

Drain the pasta, reserving ½ cup of pasta water.  Add the pasta to the vegetable mixture and add the Parmesan. Stir to combine, adding pasta water to thin, if desired.

Divide among six bowls and top each with 1/3 of a ball of fresh Mozzarella, torn by hand.

Garnish with basil and finish with flaky sea salt, adding more red pepper flakes if desired.

Notes

Use a bit of the pasta water, if you prefer a more saucy pasta and feel free to hit it with more butter. What could be bad?

Not going to lie – I wouldn’t be mad if you threw a Tablespoon or two of pesto on this. I did however create this combo of ingredients to let stellar tomatoes, sweetest corn and gorgeous squash be the rock stars. The more things you add, the less they are the standouts. This pasta mimics a fresh ear of corn slathered with butter. You be the master of your destiny!

  • Prep Time: 10 minutes
  • Cook Time: 15 minutes
  • Category: Pasta
  • Method: Stovetop
  • Cuisine: Italian, American

Keywords: Tomato, Corn, Pasta

Skillet Burst Tomatoes Pasta with Fresh Mozzarella

To source the Maldon salt and see more of my must-have kitchen tools, visit my shop. (affiliate links)

© Copyright: KatyKeck.com 2018. All rights reserved.

 

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Harvest Grains Salad with Oven-Dried Tomatoes

Harvest Grains Salad with Oven-Dried Tomatoes

When I find something that will change  your life – FOREVER – I must share. I’m not such a fan of pre-seasoned packages, like those dried bean soup mixes loaded with some heavy doses of sodium, but I recently stumbled across this beauty at Trader Joe’s. It’s simply called Harvest Grains Blend and can quickly become the rock star of a wonderful fall Harvest Grains Salad. I wanted to take issue with the fact that orzo is a pasta  and not technically a grain, but I guess pasta started as a grain, right? There’s really no reason to get cranky, because this is a great Mama’s helper. It has Israeli couscous (the jumbo pearl size), three colors of orzo (plain, red pepper and spinach), split baby garbanzo beans (so cute), and red quinoa. The beauty of the pre-package is that it takes the guesswork out of cooking. You can easily make your own blend, or even just use one single grain/pasta. But if you are mixing, you need to pay attention to cooking times so you don’t, for example, throw couscous and wild rice into the same pot at the same time. Cooking time here is a mere ten minutes.

Harvest Grains

Israeli couscous and OrzoIsraeli couscous is larger than standard coucous and is slightly chewy and comes in a variety of flavors. Shown here is  a tri-color blend, including unflavored, spinach and tomato. The pasta in the center is orzo.

I hope you are taking advantage of the last of the season’s juicy tomatoes. I have detailed before how you can simply split them, put them cut side up on a sheet pan, sprinkle with salt, and slow roast them to concentrate the flavors and dehydrate the liquid. From there, once cooled, they are easy to Ziploc and freeze. I  use them all winter in frittatas, cornbreads, pastas, soups and stews, on pizzas, focaccia, and in salads.  They are a sweet treat come February, and now is the time to make it happen!

Oven Dried Tomatoes

Tomatoes are a natural BFF to blue cheeses.  While blue can be made with cow’s, goat’s or sheep’s milk, all varieties share a common production technique which involves ripening them using cultures of the mold Penicillium. The green or blue veins are created during the aging process by spiking with stainless steel rods to aerate the cheese and encourage the mold’s growth.  It’s not hard to see where the spikes went in on this hunk of Glacier Wildfire Blue. To learn more, check in with our friends at The Cheese Lady for great info on many cheeses, blue and beyond.   

Glacier Wildfire Blue

For this salad I chose Delft. It’s a buttery cow’s milk cheese with a clean finish – a bit sweet and not too salty. This cheese comes from the Netherlands and is so named for its resemblance to Delftware pottery. The blue veins and milky whiteness resemble the lovely pottery, as if broken and put back together.

Delft Cheese

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Harvest Grains Salad with Oven-Dried Tomatoes

Harvest Grains Salad with Oven-Dried Tomatoes


  • Author: Katy Keck
  • Total Time: 30 minutes
  • Yield: 4 - 6 1x

Description

A new twist on pasta or grain salad, this dish uses a Trader Joe’s pre-packaged combo and includes Israeli couscous, tri-color orzo, split baby garbanzos and red quinoa. While you can, oven dry some end-of-summer tomatoes and stash them in your freezer. They will add a nice flavor boost to salads like this, as well as pastas, soups, stews and anything else you might make this winter when the tomatoes in the store then will taste like cardboard.


Ingredients

Scale

Vinaigrette:

  • 2 Tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • 2 Tablespoons lemon juice
  • 1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • ¼ teaspoon pepper
  • ¼ teaspoon red pepper flakes

Salad: 


Instructions

Make the Vinaigrette:

Whisk together the ingredients and refrigerate until needed. 

Make the Salad:

Cook grains or pasta according to package directions.  Rinse with cold water to stop the cooking.

Transfer to a mixing bowl and add tomatoes, cheese, parsley, and scallions.  Stir to combine.

Toss with the dressing and refrigerate until serving time. Before serving, taste and adjust the seasonings, adding more lemon juice if needed and adding the almonds.

Notes

I used Trader Joe’s Harvest Grains blend, but you can make this with pasta, or your own combination of couscous, both regular and/or Israeli, orzo, quinoa or other favorites. 

This salad is perfect for extra add-ins. I’m keeping it pretty simple here, but feel tree to add other vegs, bacon, different cheeses or whatever your little heart desires. 

Makes 1 quart.

  • Prep Time: 15 minutes
  • Cook Time: 15 minutes
  • Category: Sides
  • Method: Stovetop

Keywords: cous cous salad

Don’t you want to just dive headfirst into this Harvest Grains Salad? 

Harvest Grains Salad with Deflt Cheese and Oven-Dried Tomatoes

© Copyright: KatyKeck.com 2017. All rights reserved.

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My Big Fat Greek Salad

My Big Fat Greek Salad

Greek Salad with Quinoa

I created this salad earlier this summer – in part because it is so tasty (of course), and in part because it is a starch that is hearty and filling without being potato salad. Yawn.  Plus that whole mayo aversion thing I got going.  It made its first appearance at the Burger Pot Lucky.  And ever since, I have been getting requests for the recipe.  One of the great things about adding grains to any salad is their ability to stretch.  The ingredients normally found in a Greek salad are all primo, which is to say pricey.  The addition of quinoa gives you bang for the buck.

Red Quinoa

If you aren’t familiar with quinoa, get to know it.  It’s kind of a miracle food: it comes in several colors including black, white and red, cooks in 10-15 minutes, is high in protein, fiber, and folate, is gluten-free, and is a decent source of iron, zinc and magnesium.  First cultivated in the Andes (Peru, Bolivia, Ecuador) some 4000 years ago (with non-domesticated sightings dating back more than 7000 years), Incans considered quinoa the “mother of all grains” and held it sacred, which caused the Spanish colonists to consider it pagan and led them to forbid it.  But, quinoa is finally having its day – the United Nations General Assembly gave quinoa its own year – 2013 the International Year of Quinoa – to celebrate the Incan ability to preserve this ancient tradition and live in harmony with nature.  Hallelujah!  It was the hope of the UN that quinoa would be a major player in attaining MDGs (Millennium Development Goals) and be instrumental in maintaining SDGs (Sustainable Development Goals) by providing food security, nutrition and aiding in poverty eradication.  And while you are getting to know quinoa, get to know the UN and its work on food security.

Meanwhile back in the kitchen: I know I can only ask you to pit olives so many times in one summer (looking at you panzanella), so here I am telling you to pick up a jar of an olive relish or tapenade or bruschetta topping – grab a product that has done the heavy lifting for you – and make that the base of your dressing.  I’m all about short cuts in cooking when possible.  Trader Joe’s has a green olive tapenade that I really like and it makes a super tasty green olive vinaigrette, but check your condiment section at the grocery and see what you have available.  If you can’t find something olive based, then try a pepper relish or whatever kind of bruschetta or crostini topping your joint offers.

My Big Fat Greek Salad

Quinoa Greek Salad

Green Olive Vinaigrette:

  • 1 cup green olive tapenade (I like Trader Joe’s and use the whole 10-ounce jar.  But you can also use any kind of tapenade or bruschetta spread, or just use 1 cup chopped oil-cured green or black olives.  Please! No California black olives in water!!!!)
  • 1/2 cup lemon juice
  • 1/2 cup EVOO
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon ground black pepper or favorite pepper blend (lemon pepper would be amazing)
  • Zest of two lemons

Whisk together all ingredients in a small bowl.

Store, refrigerated, in an airtight container.

Makes 2 cups.  (This salad will use about 1/3 of this Vinaigrette recipe.)

Prepping the Ingredients

Greek Salad:

  • 1 cup raw quinoa (red or white)
  • 1 16-ounce can garbanzo beans, rinsed and drained
  • ½ seedless English cucumber, cut in ½” dice
  • 4 scallions, sliced
  • 1 ½ cups halved cherry tomatoes
  • 8 ounces feta, cubed
  • ¼ cup each: chopped parsley, mint, dill and cilantro

Rinse and drain the quinoa, then add to a pot with tight-fitting lid along with 2 cups water or stock.  Bring to a boil, cover, and reduce heat to a simmer. Cook for 10-15 minutes until all liquid is absorbed.  Transfer to a mixing bowl and cool.

When cool, add garbanzos, cucumbers, scallions, tomatoes and feta.

Dress the salad with the green olive vinaigrette, using about 1/3 of it or more, as needed.   Refrigerate until ready to serve, then add chopped herbs and check seasonings. I like to finish it off with my beloved Maldon Sea Salt Flakes. This dish can easily be made a day or so ahead, but add herbs and check seasonings and acidity at serving time.

Makes about 1 ½ quarts.

Burger and a Salad - a Greek Salad with Quinoa

This post contains affiliate links.  For more of my must-have faves, check out my shop.

© Copyright: KatyKeck.com 2016. All rights reserved.

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Rustic Tuscan Panzanella Bread Salad: Best-Ever Bread Salad with Peak of the Season Tomatoes

Rustic Tuscan Panzanella Bread Salad: Best-Ever Bread Salad with Peak of the Season Tomatoes

Rustic Panzanella Bread Salad

This time of year when the tomatoes are hanging ripe and juicy, heavy on the vine I am often reminded of two lively ladies from London whom I met styling Panzanella Bread Salad at the Today Show for their River Café Cookbook.  Rose Gray and Ruth Rogers set up shop in the Hammersmith section of London along Thames Wharf in the late 80s. It was a stylish and very popular place (still is) and a launching pad for the new generation of star chefs, Jamie Oliver and April Bloomfield, among them.  But despite its iconic status and reputation for exclusivity, the restaurant is most famous for serving the kind of familiar food you might eat in an Italian home.  Simple, rustic and full of flavor.  But don’t be fooled by the seeming simplicity.  It takes a lot of work to look that simple.  The recipes in that first book were extremely demanding and there is some chance that I resented all those details, if ever so slightly.  I had to squeeze and sieve tomatoes by hand to get cups and cups of tomato juice.  I had to make A LOT of dishes and each seemed to have endless lists of both ingredients and steps.  But I did get what they were doing. They had an immense respect for ingredients and exerted what some called a “moral pressure” to be precise.  I like to think I am a bit more of realist than they, and I always point the way toward short cuts when possible.  But then again, the Queen hasn’t awarded me with the Most Excellent Order of the British Empire.  Yet.

Sourdough Bread Rubbed with Garlic and Olive Oil

Panzanella – a Tuscan bread salad which incorporates day-old bread – is best when tomatoes are at their peak.  N.O.W. Authentic bread salads do not toast bread, but rather rely on stale bread.  The traditional panzanella is made with a bread that stales quickly on its own, having been made without salt, a tradition that dates back to the days when salt was heavily taxed and therefore used only for essentials like curing meat and preserving milk (cheese).  Bread made without salt will dry out quickly – hence the abundance of Tuscan recipes using stale bread, many of which Ruth and Rose served at River Café: bread soups like ribollita, pappa al Pomodoro or acquacotta.  These recipes use this very stale bread, soak it in liquid, and then crumble it into the dish.   In our modern American lifestyle, we’re less likely to have stale bread laying around, so I stale it up here by rubbing with garlic, brushing with olive oil and putting the slices on the grill (or under the broiler), then hand tearing and leaving the cubes out to stale a bit more.

Salted Anchovies

Another precise ingredient Ruth and Rose call for in this recipe is salt-packed anchovies. I know you are already moving toward delete and curling your lip. Stop it. Right now!  I promise there are other options, but let me make a brief case for the lowly anchovy, starting by pointing out that I think I know why you are not a fan. In the US, we are exposed to tiny tins of little hairy fish often slapped atop pizzas. Why? Exactly! Why? They are hairy, oily and full of little bones.  On the other end of the slimy fish spectrum (trademark pending) are salt-packed anchovies, bearing little resemblance.  They are big enough to pry open with a thumbnail and easily lift out the bones.  And the salt has wicked away the nasty fishy oils that we don’t so much like.  The rich and unctuous saltiness amplifies other flavors and provides an umami (the fifth taste after sweet, salty, sour, bitter) that is impossible to recreate with salt alone.  #depthofflavor  You won’t have a clue there are fish in this, but you will wonder how tomato juice got this damn tasty.   If you don’t want to take the trouble sourcing them (Trouble? Really? Salt-Packed Anchovies are in my shop and available at amazon prime!), go ahead and use the hairy fellas in the little tin.  Just cover them in kosher salt and set aside for 20 minutes.  That is the easiest DIY way to pull out the fish oils.  Just be sure to rinse well and pat dry.  These little ones are okay to throw in the blender whole, as their bones will pulverize.  If you go the distance – yeah, you! – don’t worry about all the leftovers.  Just transfer the remaining salt-packed anchovies from the metal tin into a glass container with air-tight lid, and cover with sea salt and a few drops of water to dissolve the salt. They will keep for a very long time, refrigerated and covered.

Rustic Tuscan Panzanella Bread Salad

Full disclaimer: you would be hard-pressed to find a salad in Tuscany that looks like this.  I have taken the liberty to super-size it American-style:  Bigger, less delicate, chunks and a combo of ingredients (in addition to the ubiquitous bread, peppers, and tomatoes) that add both pops of flavors and texture contrasts. Caper berries and oil-cured olives are mine, all mine.

The panzanella bread salad below will use a bit more than half of this dressing.  But if you are putting the time into sourcing the ingredients, you will be sorry if you don’t have leftovers.  I stopped short of giving you the ratios needed to fill a tub, but you may want to bathe in it.  It’s that good.  I have short cut the hand squeezing of tomatoes, so use that time to try to find oil-cured olives. Of course you can use pitted water-packed canned black olives….if that’s your cup of tea.  But some day give the oil-cured olives a whirl. They are what olives should taste and feel like.  And when you are pitting them by hand, don’t cuss at me – think of Rose and Ruth, putting a little “moral pressure” on you.

Oil-Cured Olives, Caper Berries, and Salted Anchovies

Spicy Tomato Vinaigrette:

  • 1 1/2 cups tomato juice (or two 5.5 ounce cans)
  • ¼ cup red wine vinegar
  • 2 Tablespoons lemon juice
  • 6 cloves of garlic, peeled
  • 6 Salt-Packed Anchovies, soaked for 5 minutes, rinsed, bones pulled out, and patted dry (see notes above and below about anchovy options)
  • 1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes
  • 1 cup EVOO

Combine all the ingredients, except olive oil, in a blender and puree until the garlic and anchovies are incorporated.  With the motor running, pour the olive oil in a thin stream, until all is incorporated and the dressing is emulsified.  Listen for the motor to change sounds as you finish with the oil and saturation is reached with the emulsification.  It should go from a noisy high-pitched whine to a smooth whir.

Keep in the refrigerator in an airtight container until needed.

Makes 2 2/3 cups vinaigrette.

Grilled Bread

Panzanella – Best Ever Bread Salad

  • 1 pound loaf 1-2 day-old chewy good-quality bread (I used sourdough with seeds), cut in 1 ½” wide slices (about 5 slices)
  • Garlic and oil to brush the bread
  • 1 ½ cups Spicy Tomato Vinaigrette
  • 3 large ripe tomatoes (combo of red and yellow), cut into large chunks
  • One 12-ounce jar of roasted red peppers, drained and diced
  • 1 yellow bell pepper, seeded and diced
  • 1 bunch of watercress, stems removed and torn into bite-sized pieces
  • 1 bunch scallions (about 5 or 6), sliced
  • ½ cup pitted oil-cured black olives (or whatever olive you prefer)
  • One 4-ounce jar of Caper Berries in Brine (or capers), drained
  • ¼ cup coarsely chopped parsley

Rub the bread slices on both sides with a smashed garlic clove and brush with olive oil.  Grill over a hot grill or toast both sides under the broiler or in toaster.  Let cool, and then tear into large bite-sized pieces.  You should have about 8 cups of bread chunks.  Spread out on a sheet pan and let “stale up” a bit more.  You can prep to this stage several days ahead.  Once they are dried out, store in a zip bag.

Two hours before serving, toss the stale bread cubes with ¾ cup Spicy Tomato Vinaigrette. Set aside.

When ready to serve, add the remaining ingredients and toss with additional vinaigrette, as needed.  This is where I normally say taste seasonings and adjust, but this is so full of flavor I can’t imagine what you could do to improve it.  Damn, that’s tasty!

Closing arguments for the Case of the Anchovy:  If you really really really can’t see your way past their bad reputation, use salt to taste, and maybe even a splash of soy in your vinaigrette. Soy Sauce in all its fermented glory might give you a hint of the umami you’ll be missing. Just know that Rose is rolling in her grave and there isn’t a snowball’s chance in hell that Ruth will ever confirm your dinner reservation.  Choice is yours.

Serves 8-10 and makes fabulous leftovers.

Panzanella Rustic Bread Salad

This post contains affiliate links.  For more of my must-have faves, check out my shop.

© Copyright: KatyKeck.com 2016. All rights reserved.

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