Mediterranean Chickpea Panzanella Salad

Serves: 4-5

Ingredients:

1 (8 oz) ciabatta loaf, a day old is best and easiest to use for this recipe

2 cups cherry tomatoes, halved

1 (15-16 oz) can unsalted chickpeas, drained and rinsed

1 (8.5 or 14 oz) can quartered artichoke hearts, drained (if you love artichokes, use the larger can)

3 oz feta cheese, crumbles, about ¾ cup, optional

½ cup thinly sliced red onion

¼ cup chopped fresh basil leaves, plus more for garnish

¼ cup med-robust Flying Olive Single Varietal Extra Virgin Olive Oil of Choice

1 Tbsp Flying Olive Sicilian Lemon Balsamic Vinegar

1 Tbsp + 1 tsp Flying Olive Oregano Balsamic Vinegar

½ tsp dried oregano

¼- ½ tsp garlic powder

Sea salt and freshly ground pepper to taste

Directions:

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.

Cut off the crust from the ciabatta bread. (Ok, I confess, some crusts we dipped in a little Flying Olive EVOO and they were so good.  The rest I toasted and used for breadcrumbs). Cut the remaining center into ½” cubes. Spread the bread cubes in an even layer on a baking sheet. Bake for 11-12 minutes until toasted and golden.

Combine the toasted bread, tomatoes, chickpeas, artichoke hearts, feta, onion, and basil in a large bowl. Toss to mix.

In a separate smaller bowl, whisk or shake in a jar with a lid the Flying Olive Oil and Vinegars, oregano, garlic powder, and salt and pepper. Pour ½ the dressing over the salad; toss to combine. Add more of the vinaigrette as desired, refrigerating any leftover for up to 5 days. Garnish with the chopped basil and serve

Inspired by a recipe in Cooking Light Magazine, May 2017.

Submitted by Barb and Chuck L.