Arugula Bread Salad


The best parts of the salad—peppery greens and homemade croutons—join forces with a flavorful (but simple) homemade dressing in this dish from Le Cordon Bleu Atlanta. It was presented by culinary students at the 2011 Field of Greens festival in Walnut Grove.

1/2 loaf chewy bread, crusts removed, torn into pieces
1/4 cup plus 1 tablespoon olive oil, divided use
1/2 yellow onion, thinly sliced
4 cloves garlic, thinly sliced
Salt and pepper to taste
2 tablespoons dry white wine
1/4 cup red or white wine vinegar
1 tablespoon capers
2 tablespoons chopped fresh herbs (such as parsley and basil)
1 bunch fresh arugula, rinsed, dried and torn into bite-size pieces

1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Spread the torn bread on a baking sheet and toast for 5 minutes. Place the bread in a large bowl and set aside.

2. In a sauté pan over medium heat, add 1 tablespoon olive oil, the onions, garlic and a pinch each of salt and pepper. Cook until onions are soft, about 5 minutes. Add the wine and increase the heat; cook until the wine is almost completely evaporated. Remove the pan from the heat; stir in the vinegar, capers, the remaining 1/4 cup olive oil and the herbs. Pour the mixture over the bread; toss to coat. Add the arugula and gently toss. Taste and adjust salt, pepper and vinegar, if needed.

Serves 4.
Preparation time: 20 minutes