You might roll your eyes in pity, but these days we get really excited about a loaf of stale bread. One bite of this salad, though, and you’ll get it. Crisp, peppery radishes and the subtle licorice kick of fennel punch up tangy, olive oil-drenched croutons, with herbs and salty cheese further mixing up the dynamic. We love it when winter comes through like this–tons of color and flavor to play with, even on the dreariest, chilliest day. Add a simple roast chicken or a pot of warm soup, or just serve by the giant plateful, glad dinner took all of 20 minutes to make. Trust us, try it, and you’ll be “accidentally” leaving ciabatta out on the counter too.
Radish & Fennel Panzanella
1/2 loaf day-old ciabatta, cut/torn into cubes
2-4 Tbs olive oil
2 large watermelon radishes, trimmed, cut in half and then cut into very thin half circles
1 bulb fennel, trimmed and slivered
1 small bunch green shallots or green onions, sliced thin
small handful parsley, leaves coarsely chopped
small handful cilantro, leaves coarsely chopped
2 oz parmesan cheese shaved with a vegetable peeler
juice of 1 lemon
1/4 c olive oil
salt & pepper to taste
Preheat oven to 400. Toss ciabatta cubes with 2/4 Tbs olive oil and spread on a baking sheet. Toast in oven until golden and crunchy. While bread is toasting, Place radish slices, fennel, green shallots, parsley, and cilantro in a large bowl and toss well to combine. Squeeze lemon juice over the vegetables and herbs, drizzle in the 1/4 c olive oil, add parmesan and salt and pepper to taste and toss again until everything is well combined. Serve at once or set aside for a few hours.