Garlicky Flat Bread Panzanella Salad

 

 photo 3-206

I love panzanella, the classic Italian bread salad. With ripe tomatoes, fresh mozzarella cheese, basil and crusty bread it is hard not to love it and I’ve been known to eat a bowlful or two as dinner on a hot summer evening. But sometimes even the most classic of recipes needs to be kicked up a notch. And with that you have a garlicky flat bread panzanella that was inspired by the Yankee Kitchen Ninja.

Flat bread is easy enough to make from scratch but my local grocery store carries a fabulous garlic and olive oil drenched one that is just too good to resist. When warm, the bread is perfect for absorbing the juices of the salad. For added color I like to use multi-colored grape tomatoes but feel free to use whatever flavorful variety you prefer. And because the beans add an added burst of protein, with a glass of Chianti, this salad is substantial enough for a light dinner on a hot summer night. Enjoy.

GARLICKY FLAT BREAD PANZANELLA SALAD

2 small garlic flat breads, heated in the oven and cut into bite-sized pieces

Scant 1/4 cup white balsamic vinegar

2 tablespoons olive oil

Juice of 1/2 lemon

3 cloves garlic, minced

Salt and pepper to taste

1 cup pickling cucumbers, cut into coins

2 pints grape tomatoes, halved

1 cup orecchiette shaped fresh mozzarella or other small balls, drained

1 cup cannellini beans, rinsed

1/4 cup sliced green onion

  • Preheat an oven to 400 degrees.
  • Place the flat breads on a rimmed baking sheet and bake for 10 minutes. Remove from the oven and allow to cool slightly before cutting into bite sized pieces.
  • Meanwhile, in a large bowl, whisk together the vinegar, olive oil, lemon juice, minced garlic, salt and pepper to taste.
  • Add the tomatoes, cucumbers, cheese, beans, green onion and stir to combine.
  • Add the flat bread, toss well and serve immediately.

Serves 3-4

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