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greek panzanella salad.

I like bread.

I like salad.

Why not marry the two?

Warning:  Chopping Required!  Just think of it as a workout for your arms before you eat this deliciousness.

Did I mention there are 6 cups of toasted french bread in this recipe?  It’s kind of like a crouton salad…

I adapted this recipe from Barefoot Contessa and modified it to be a bit more “frugalicious” and lower in fat/calories (well maybe…).  It served 6 and then some!  I think I may throw some chicken on it and call it a lunchy salad next time.  See What I Learned below…

Greek Panzanella Salad

Adapted from Ina Garten

(serves 6)

What You’ll Need:

6 cups cubed french bread ($1.27 at $1.69/loaf)

1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil ($.32 at $.08/tablespoon)

sea salt

1 cucumber, unpeeled, seeded and sliced 1/4 inch thick ($.49 per)

2 bell peppers, chopped, one of each color (I went with the two that were cheapest – red and green, $.49 and $.99)

1 pint cherry or grape tomatoes, halved ($2.50/pint)

1/2 red onion, sliced in half rounds ($.38 at $1.49/lb)

3 oz. light feta cheese, crumbled ($1.12 at $2.99/8 oz. at TJs)

1/2 cup black olives , halved ($.50 at $1.99/can)

Vinegarette

2 cloves garlic, minced ($.06 at $.03/clove)

1 tsp. dried oregano (trace)

1/2 tsp. dijon mustard ($.15 at $2.29/jar)

1/4 cup red wine vinegar ($.75 at $.25/tablespoon)

salt and pepper

1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil ($.24 at $.08/tablespoon)

Instructions

Heat olive oil in a skillet over medium-low heat.  Add cubed french bread, sprinkle with salt, and cook 5-10 minutes, turning frequently, until nicely browned.  Add more olive oil if needed.

Place cucumber, bell peppers, tomatoes, onion and olives in a bowl and combine.

For the vinaigrette, whisk together all ingredients and pour over vegetables.  Add feta and bread cubes and mix together lightly.  Set aside for 30 minutes and serve at room temperature.

TOTAL:  $9.26 or $1.54 per serving.

Nutrition:

395 calories per serving

24 grams of fat

38 carbs

11 grams protein

What I Learned:  This is sure to be a great crowd pleaser, feeding 6-8 people, but may not be a staple Frugal Foodie recipe since it is a bit higher in calories/fat/carbs and is more expensive for a side salad.  I say bring it to a pot luck to impress your friends and neighbors, or add chicken to it and call it a main dish salad.

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