Classic Italian Bread Salad
Use day-old loaves of bread for this classic Italian salad. They are less expensive than freshly baked loaves and will also provide a firmer texture that holds up better when dressing is added.
5 cup Italian bread cubes
2 ripe tomatoes, cubed
2 cucumbers, sliced
1/2 cup sliced black olives
1/2 cup basil or parsley leaves, minced
1/2 cup olive oil
1/4 cup red-wine vinegar
1/4 cup lemon juice
1 tsp minced garlic
1 tsp salt
1/2 tsp red pepper flakes
Preheat oven to 300°F. Toast bread cubes until dry and lightly browned, about 15 minutes.
Meanwhile, combine tomatoes, cucumbers, green onions, olives and basil in a large serving bowl.
For dressing, combine oil, vinegar, lemon juice, garlic, salt and red pepper flakes in a small bowl. Whisk until salt is dissolved and ingredients are blended.
Pour dressing over vegetables. Add bread cubes; stir gently. Serve immediately.
To deseed a cucumber quickly, peel it and slice lengthwise. Scoop out the seeds with a small spoon.