Panzanella salad with homemade vinaigrette

We’ve eaten this salad many times as a meal in itself. The dressing’s what really makes it.

this size salad will feed 6 as a side item

the dressing we’re going to make will dress two salads of this size, so you’ll have some left in your jar to make another salad later on

the dressing does not have any preservatives in it, but it does have fresh lemon juice so it will keep in the fridge for a week or more (mine never lasts that long) it’s also REALLY good on sliced sandwich bread with turkey!

did I mention we’re going to make croutons, no

oh well here we go

take 1/2 loaf of Italian bread

cut into large croutons

put them on a sheet pan and drizzle with olive oil

don’t skimp on the olive oil

if you don’t get enough on them they will simply be toast, but with a good drizzle of oil they become perfection

sprinkle a dusting of kosher salt

toss them and run them in an oven preheated at 375′ for 10 minutes or until golden brown

while your croutons are baking chop you vegetables

large chop 1/2 cucumber

do the same for the bell pepper

and tomatoes

slice 3 green onions

by this time your croutons will be ready

mine got a little too brown,oops – I rushed them by turning the oven up

do as I say, not as I do

they were still wonderful, I didn’t hear any complaints from the pack of hyenas who ate them  last night – that would also be the hyenas who live here………..

Yum! just look at that color

chop one head of hearts of romaine lettuce

then add the vegetables to the lettuce

time to start the vinaigrette

most of the time I cook with extra virgin olive oil, but when I make dressing I always use it, I think it just has a lighter flavor

I like to make my dressings in little jars – my mother finds these from time to time at TJ Maxx or Marshalls

most of the time they have wonderful jams in them

anyway this is a jar she found for me that had imported jelly in it

add 1/2 cup of olive oil

slice two medium lemons

juice them

I got this juicer at a “Pampered chef party”   I LOVE it!!!

my husband wanted to buy me an electric juicer, but I told him not to – this juicer is perfect for me

remember that peeler from my Apple Crisp recipe?  – it came from “Pampered chef” too

add the juice to your jar

add 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt

1/2 teaspoon pepper -  I like pepper, if you’re not a big fan add only 1/4 tsp

add 1 clove of garlic finely chopped

last but not least add 2 heaping tablespoon of Dijon mustard

pardon me, but I prefer Grey Poupon

“put a lid on it” and give it a vigorous shake

when all the ingredients are incorporated they’ll look like this

add your dressing

toss with your croutons and 3/4 cup parmesan cheese

we had it with a top sirloin steak and boiled/oven roasted Yukon golds!

Enjoy!!!!!

the wanna be country girl – Caroline

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2 Responses to Panzanella salad with homemade vinaigrette

  1. JP says:

    Oh my…Caroline…I’m salivating like crazy!!! I’m going to try that dressing!…:)JP

    The Wanna Be Country Girl Reply:

    I hope you like it JP. You have to let me know after you’ve tried it!
    talk to you soon,
    the wanna be country girl – Caroline

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