Panzanella (Italian Bread Salad)

Italian bread salad
Italian bread salad


1/2 loaf artisan-style baguette, cut into 1/2-inch cubes
2 medium vine ripened tomatoes, seeded, cut into 1/2-inch dice
1 small European cucumber, quartered and sliced 1/2-inch thick
1/2 medium red onion, diced 1/2 inch
1 cup basil leaves, julienned and loosely packed
3/4 cup (3 ounces) Wisconsin whole milk Fresh Mozzarella Cheese "pearls" or cut into 1/2-inch cubes
3/4 cup (3 ounces) Wisconsin Italian Fontina Cheese, cut into 1/2-inch cubes
1/4 cup balsamic vinegar
2 tablespoons nonpareil capers with juice
2 small garlic cloves, minced
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil


Preheat oven to 400°F. Place bread cubes on baking sheet. Bake 10 minutes or until slightly dry and just turning golden brown. Remove and cool.

While bread is cooling, prepare vegetables and cheese; place in salad bowl. Combine vinegar, capers, garlic and salt in small bowl; whisk in olive oil.

Toss vegetables and cheese with bread. Pour dressing over top and toss until evenly coated.