Lively shades of pink from fresh cut watermelon and roasted beets, mixed with arugula, seasoned toasty bread, onions, and an oil-based vinaigrette.
They say starting is the hardest part. But I think that’s a lie. Consistency is the hardest part. How many projects have you started but never finished? I’ll answer that: definitely way too many to count.
I always find myself putting off writing the posts until the very last minute. I love researching the recipes, making and photographing them. But writing about it?? A whole different struggle. Here we go…
Have you ever had a panzanella salad? It’s also referred to as an Italian Bread Salad, but I think panzanella sounds fancier. The proper way to make it is with bread, tomatoes, and maybe a few veggies. But sometimes it’s fun to break the rules…the only classic ingredient we’re keeping is the bread. I’m adding a few handfuls of arugula too because it is called a salad after all.
How do you feel about beets? Most people I know either hate them (my dad) or love them. And, most the time, when I ask someone what they make with beets 90% of the time they make pickled beets. I have yet to make pickled beets, but I would love to find a great recipe. The beets in this salad are roasted in the oven and when it combines with all the other ingredients it doesn’t taste quite as ‘earthy’.
Let’s talk about these COLORS! They are so vibrant and summery! If you let the salad sit a little bit, the bread even starts to absorb the pink color. Serving the salad takes a bit of planning ahead. You want the salad to sit for a little bit (about 15 -20 minutes max) so the bread can absorb all the goodness. But you don’t want it to sit too long because the bread can get soggy. It’s best to plan on serving it no less than 15 minutes after making it and no more than 2 hours after making it. if you really wanted to prep the salad the day before, you would probably mix everything and add the bread a few minutes before serving.
Watermelon Beet Panzanella Salad
Roasted beets, juicy watermelon, onions, and crusty bread mixed together with a lemon vinaigrette.
- 4 cups crusty bread (like sourdough), cut in 1 inch cubes
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- 2 beets, diced in small pieces; roasted
- 5 cups watermelon
- 1/2 medium red onion, diced in small pieces
- 2 cups arugula
- 1/4 cup olive oil
- 2 tablespoons red wine vinegar
- 1 tablespoon honey
- 2 lemons, juiced and zested
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
- 1/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper
- Preheat oven to 425 degrees. Toss the bread, garlic, 1 tablespoon olive oil, salt & pepper (to taste) on a parchment paper lined baking sheet. Bake 12-18 minutes, until bread is golden brown and toasted.
- In a large serving bowl, combine the bread, beets, watermelon, onion, and arugula.
- In a small bowl, whisk 1/4 cup olive oil, red wine vinegar, honey, lemons, 1/4 teaspoon salt, 1/2 teaspoon black pepper, red pepper. Pour over the salad.
- Let salad sit 15 minutes before serving so the bread soaks up some of the dressing. Best if ate within 2 hours of serving.
images and text © North Coast Eats
adapted from Dishing Out Health
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