I recently took this salad to an informal bbq at a friend’s house here in Murphys where the weather has suddenly taken a turn towards summer. It got rave reviews and I had so many requests for the recipe, I decided to feature it as a blog post! Easy, cool and refreshing, this salad is interesting, pretty and delightfully tasty. Spring veggies are still plentiful in the market so take advantage before they are a fond memory.
‘Good bye to Spring’ Veggie Panzanella
for the salad:
1 small round loaf of artisan sunflower (or other) seeded bread, cut into 1/2” pieces
3 cups frozen peas, thawed
1 English cucumber, sliced thinly
1 bunch radishes, sliced thinly
1 lb bunch of asparagus, cut to 1/2 inch pieces
1 - 5 oz container fresh sunflower sprouts
1/4 cup sunflower seeds, toasted and salted
4 oz crumbled feta
for the vinaigrette:
2 T fresh dill, chopped
1 large shallot, finely diced
1/3 cup white balsamic vinegar
1 T fresh lemon juice
2/3 cup extra-virgin olive oil
salt & pepper
Preheat the oven to 375 degrees. Spread the bread on a baking sheet and bake for 15-20 minutes until toasted to a light brown, cool. Meanwhile, in a small pot of boiling salted water, blanch the asparagus until tender, 2-3 minutes. Drain and transfer to a bowl of ice water to stop the cooking and set the color. Drain well, pat dry. In a large bowl whisk the vinegar and lemon juice together with the dill and shallot, salt and pepper. Add the oil slowly to incorporate. Place the bread, peas, cucumbers, radishes and asparagus in a bowl and toss to coat with about half of the vinaigrette. Add the feta, sunflower sprouts and seeds. Toss with more vinaigrette as needed. Serve right away or let it sit for a minute to soak up the dressing!
As a caterer for over 30 years, I have established a reputation for consistently creating original menus inspired by the occasion and the season, presenting them with an ease and elegance uniquely my own. Fresh, locally-sourced ingredients are the basis of my creative “from scratch” menus, which range from the classically elegant to rustic and whimsical.
"Love your recipes! Pat made your avocado toast a few weeks ago, delish! I'm taking them to a party in a few weeks, although the mushroom crostata looks pretty darn good!"