This week I have been all about no cook or minimal amount of cooking meals. Call it laziness or adapting my husband’s summer vacation lifestyle, but not much action has been happening on my stovetop.
Through my couch potato-ing haze, I had a revelation. What is more no cook than a salad?
A salad is easy to throw together any night of the week. But a salad that has big chunks of crusty bread as a main ingredient is something special. It isn’t a salad anymore. It’s a panzanella! (Said in an Italian accent).
The fancy name makes it sound…fancy and complicated. But have no fear; it is easier to make than you think!
Ingredients (Serves 4-5 as a side and 2-3 as a Main Dish)
For the Salad:
½ English Cucumber, chopped
1 ½ Cup Tomatoes, diced
¾ Cup Black Olives, sliced
1 Shallot, thinly sliced
½ Cup Feta Crumbles
1 ½ Cup Croutons
1 Teaspoon Fresh Basil, chopped (optional)
1 Teaspoon Fresh Parsley, chopped (optional)
For the Dressing:
Juice of 1 Lemon (about a tablespoon)
1 Teaspoon Balsamic Vinegar
3 Tablespoons Olive Oil
1 Teaspoon Dried Oregano
½ Teaspoon Salt
¼ Teaspoon Pepper
Note: Buying some pre-sliced canned black olives and some nice store bought croutons is a huge time saver.
Combine the cucumber, tomatoes, olives, shallot, and feta in a large bowl.
I highly recommend not adding the dressing, croutons, and optional fresh herbs to the salad until you are ready to serve, otherwise the croutons get really soggy. Until then, keep the vegetables and dressing chilled in the refrigerator.
In a small bowl, whisk together the lemon juice, balsamic vinegar, olive oil, dried oregano, salt, and pepper. Set aside until ready to serve.
When you are ready to serve, toss the dressing, vegetables, fresh herbs, and croutons together in the large serving bowl. Salad in its separate components will last in the refrigerator for a day or two. Once the salad is mixed and combined, it is best served and eaten right away.