Italian Salad With Basil Vinaigrette
Thin strips of Genoa salami, chunks of sharp provolone cheese and fresh basil add plenty of zesty, Italian-style flavor to this tossed salad. The vinaigrette is best made just before serving to get the freshest flavor from the basil. For even more of a flavor boost, toss in some homemade Garlic Croutons too!
- 6 cups romaine lettuce, torn into bite-sized pieces
- 1-1/2 cups radicchio, torn into bite-sized pieces
- 6 thin slices Genoa salami, cut into thin strips
- 1/3 cup sharp provolone cheese, cut into 1/4-inch chunks
- 1/4 cup red onion, diced
- 1 cucumber, peeled and sliced
- 2 medium tomatoes, cored and cut into eighths
- 2 tablespoons grated romano cheese
- Freshly ground black pepper
- Garlic croutons (optional - recipe follows)
- Dressing Ingredients:
- 1-1/2 tablespoon champagne vinegar
- 2 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice
- 1 teaspoon Dijon-style mustard
- 1/4 teaspoon salt (or more to taste)
- 1 clove garlic, finely chopped
- 1 tablespoon onion, finely chopped
- 1/3 cup extra-virgin olive oil
- 6 large fresh basil leaves
Combine the lettuce, radicchio, salami, provolone, red onion, cucumber and tomatoes in a large bowl and set aside.
Combine all of the dressing ingredients except the basil and olive oil in a blender or the work bowl of a food processor. Blend until smooth. With the machine running, add the olive oil and blend completely, then add the basil leaves and process until smooth. Taste and adjust the salt if needed.
1-1/2 cups diced Italian bread, cut into 1/2-inch cubes
2 tablespoons butter
1 tablespoon olive oil
3 cloves garlic, very finely chopped
1/4 teaspoon salt
Preheat the oven to 350°F. Heat the butter in a small skillet over medium heat. Add the olive oil and chopped garlic and cook, stirring until the garlic becomes fragrant, about 30 seconds. Add the bread cubes, sprinkle with salt and toss to coat with the butter-oil mixture. Transfer the croutons to a baking sheet, discarding any garlic that doesn't adhere, and bake until crisp and light golden, about 5 to 6 minutes. Set aside.