This is a great salad to have in the summer when my neighbor's gardens are in full force. Coming from a long line of gardeners my husband and I unfortunately lack green thumbs but we certainly know what to do with the abundance of produce that comes our way! Don't be alarmed by the large ingredient list, it's mostly pantry items. I usually just need to go and pick up some baby mozzarella balls and a loaf of ciabatta and I'm ready to go.
To make croutons
- 1 lb ciabatta
- 1⁄3 cup extra virgin olive oil
- coarse salt
- fresh ground pepper
For salad and dressing
- 1 cucumber
- 1⁄2 small red onion
- 1 large red bell pepper
- 1 large green bell pepper
- 3 large tomatoes
- 1⁄2 cup basil, finely sliced
- 1 lb fresh mozzarella ball, bocconcini are about 1 inch in diameter
- 2 teaspoons coarse salt
- 1 teaspoon fresh ground pepper
- 2⁄3 cup extra virgin olive oil
- 1⁄3 cup vinegar, balsamic
- 1 tablespoon lemon juice
- 1⁄2 teaspoon garlic powder
- Preheat oven to 350ºF to make croutons.
- Cut the bread into 3/4 inch cubes and drizzle with olive oil, salt and pepper. Bake for about 15 minutes until lightly browned. They should be crunchy yet soft. Allow to cool while assembling salad.
- Cut cucumber, red onion, bell peppers, and tomatoes into 3/4 inch pieces. Place in large bowl.
- Drain and halve mozzarella balls and add to vegetables.
- Add salt, pepper, olive oil, balsamic vinegar, lemon juice, and garlic powder into the large bowl. Mix well.
- Add bread cubes and mix again. Serve immediately.