I’ve got the perfect summer salad for you. It’s actually very good and believe it or not, I’m still thinking about it from last night. I think the fact that it was stuffed with basil helps. I love basil and there was no shortage of it in this one.
As you may have noticed by reading this blog, I go through many moods when it comes to cooking. A few weeks ago, I went through my “sandwich” mood. This week, I think I’m back to salad and more summery food. I even made a pizza last night too, but I’ll wait until tomorrow to share that one with you.
Anyway, I have this one cookbook that’s stuffed to the gills with all types of salad recipes and as I was flipping through the pages this go round, I stumbled across a wonderful looking salad that was full of cut tomatoes, basil, feta cheese and something called “pangrattato.” I had to look up what pangrattato meant and apparently, it’s just a fancy way of saying breadcrumbs.
This is an easy salad to prepare. It requires just basic ingredients, but you will have to toast your own breadcrumbs. Don’t worry, it’s easy and they come out really well. Between the two different types of tomatoes, the fresh basil, feta cheese and breadcrumbs, I think you’ll enjoy this salad very much.
3 Ounces Rustic White Bread
6 Tablespoons Extra-Virgin Olive Oil
Ground Black Pepper
1 Teaspoon Garlic, Minced
1 1/2 Pounds Ripe Plum Tomatoes
1/2 Pound Cherry Tomatoes
1 Shallot, Sliced Thin
1 1/2 Tablespoons White Balsamic Vinegar
1/2 Cup Chopped Fresh Basil
8-10 Ounces Crumbled Feta Cheese
I’d like to thank America’s Test Kitchen for this incredible recipe. I found it in their resource called The Complete Vegetarian’s Cookbook and I’m so happy with it.
Prep the Tomatoes
Cut the plum tomatoes into one inch pieces and slice the cherry tomatoes in half. Then, spread the tomatoes out on a large baking sheet and lightly sprinkle salt over them. Set aside.
Process & Toast Bread
Tear the bread apart into small pieces and place those pieces into a food processor. Pulse the processor a few times until the bread is just broken down. Don’t go too far with this.
Next, warm a large skillet over medium heat. Add 2 tablespoons of the extra-virgin olive oil to the skillet, along with a pinch of salt and a pinch of pepper. Add the breadcrumbs to the skillet as well and stir until the crumbs have browned. This should take about 10 minutes.
After that, add the garlic to the breadcrumbs and continue to mix everything together. Allow these ingredients to cook for another minute or two and then turn off the heat and set the skillet aside to cool.
Prepare the Salad
In a large bowl, add the shallot, vinegar, 1/4 teaspoon salt and a few pinches of ground black pepper. Also add in the remaining olive oil and mix these ingredients well. Then, add in the tomatoes and the basil and mix until the tomatoes are coated with the basil and the vinaigrette.
Plate & Serve
Divide the salad between plates and add the crumbed feta to each plate. Then, sprinkle the breadcrumbs over each salad as well. Serve and enjoy!
The Final Tomatoes, Feta & Breadcrumbs Salad
I enjoyed this dish a lot and I’m looking forward to leftovers for tonight. If you decide to give this one a shot, please let me know your thoughts in the comment section below. Thanks for reading!