You’ll want to make this light and airy salad for dinner every night until summer ends!
I had no idea what my salads were missing…until I added my own homemade toasted “croutons” to make this gluten free panzanella salad.
I ‘ve known I was Italian for as long as I can remember. I didn’t discover my strong Slovakian nationality until a few months ago, but that’s another story for another dish! Genealogy is another one of my favored hobbies and earlier this year I was finally able to track my ancestors back to Calabria, the southern region of Italy.
I’ve never had the pleasure of meeting any of my Italian family. I was younger when my great-grandmother passed and I don’t have any memories of her, sadly. It’s a missed opportunity, to have gotten to ask here what her Italian parents were like and what foods they cooked. Food has a beautiful way of transcending generations and preserving memories in every ingredient. I can still remember the exact smell of apple pies my mother baked every Thanksgiving.
So now, I’m cooking my way through Italy and I’m trying to find dishes specific to the Calabrian traditions that my ancestors may have cooked and the wines they may have drank. I may not have gotten to know my family, but I can certainly dine in their memory.
Panzanella is traditionally a more Tuscan dish with less “greens” involved, but I can’t pass up an excuse for a delicious salad. So here we are, my Italian salad with gluten free toasted croutons.
Gluten Free Panzanella Salad
- 1 gluten free bagel, cubed (slightly stale is preferable)
- 2 cups mixed greens
- 1 cup spinach
- 1 sliced roma tomato
- Couple tablespoons of kalamata olives
- 4 pepperocini
- 4 tablespoons olive oil
- 2 tablespoons red wine vinegar
- 1 tablespoon lemon juice
- Parmesan cheese
- Heat up one tablespoon of oil in a saucepan on medium-low heat. After a few minutes, add cubed bagels.
- Occasionally move the bread cubes around until they have reached a desired level of golden brown.
- Combine mixed greens, spinach, tomatoes, olives and pepperocini on a plate.
- Whisk remaining olive oil, red wine vinegar, squeeze of lemon juice and salt and pepper to form a light dressing. Drizzle over salad and top with freshly grated parmesan cheese.