Panzanella Salad with Crab, Goat Cheese and Tomato Vinaigrette

Panzanella Salad with Crab, Goat Cheese and Tomato Vinaigrette

Serves 8

Not only is this recipe a great use for leftover bread, it's a refreshing salad of peppery arugula tossed in roasted tomato vinaigrette, topped with toasted goat cheese and generously garnished with crab meat. Summer salads don't get much better than this!

Ingredients: 
  • Toasted Bread
  • 7 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1/4 cup finely chopped fresh garlic (about 5 or 6 cloves)
  • 1 tablespoon fresh thyme leaves, stems removed
  • 1/2 tablespoon sea salt
  • 1/2 tablespoon freshly cracked black pepper
  • 1 large loaf (1 1/2 pounds) ciabatta bread, cut into 1-inch cubes
  • Vinaigrette
  • 1/2 pound yellow heirloom tomatoes, cored and cut into wedges
  • 1/4 teaspoon sea salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon freshly cracked black pepper
  • 1/2 tablespoon white wine vinegar
  • 1/2 cup olive oil
  • Goat Cheese
  • 8 ounces 365 Everyday Value Fresh Goat Cheese (plain)
  • 2 tablespoons toasted pistachios
  • 2 tablespoons panko-style breadcrumbs
  • 3 tablespoons unbleached flour
  • pinch each salt and black pepper
  • 1 large egg, beaten with 3 tablespoons water
  • 4 tablespoons olive oil
  • Salad
  • 10 ounces baby arugula, washed
  • 1 large brandywine or red heirloom tomato, cored and cut into 1-inch cubes
  • 16 ounces Whole Catch Lump Wild Caught Crab Meat
  • 2 ripe avocados, peeled, pitted and cut into 16 slices
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Method: 

For the toasted bread, preheat oven to 350°F. Whisk together olive oil with garlic, thyme, salt and pepper. Place bread in a large mixing bowl and drizzle with 5 tablespoons of the oil mixture. Toss to coat evenly. Arrange bread cubes on a parchment-lined baking sheet. Bake 15 to 20 minutes, until golden and slightly crispy. Let cool at room temperature.

For the vinaigrette, toss yellow tomatoes with the remaining 2 tablespoons oil-garlic mixture. Spread on another parchment-lined baking sheet and roast at 350°F until lightly browned, 15 to 20 minutes. Remove from oven and allow to cool slightly. Remove skins from tomatoes and discard, squeezing any juice from the skins into a blender or food processor. Add peeled tomatoes and process with vinegar, salt, pepper and olive oil until smooth. Refrigerate until needed.

For the goat cheese, slice goat cheese log into 8 rounds using a knife dipped into hot water. Process pistachios with breadcrumbs in a food processor until finely ground; place in a bowl. Place flour in a separate bowl and season with salt and pepper. Whisk together egg with water in a bowl. Arrange bowls in the following order: flour, egg wash, breadcrumbs.

Heat olive oil in a sauté pan over medium heat. Dip goat cheese rounds in flour, then egg wash, then bread crumbs. Cook 30 seconds to 1 minute per side, until golden and crisp. Drain on a paper towel-lined plate.

To assemble the salad, toss arugula, red heirloom tomatoes and toasted bread in a large mixing bowl with just enough vinaigrette to coat. Divide among eight plates. Divide crabmeat among the salads. Arrange two slices of avocado per salad over the crab and top with a goat cheese round.

Nutritional Info: 
Per Serving:800 calories (470 from fat), 52g total fat, 12g saturated fat, 80mg cholesterol, 1010mg sodium, 57g carbohydrate (8g dietary fiber, 8g sugar), 30g protein

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