Thank goodness for summer. I’ve been waiting for tomatoes for a full year, and they’re finally here!
Our weather has been crazy so far this summer and right now, I’m not sure how our tomatoes will fare in the garden. The plants are growing, but it’s sloooooooooow going. We’ve had a few zucchini already, so I’m still holding out hope.
In the meantime, I’m buying a few at the farmer’s markets each week to hold me over.
With the arrival of baby boy last year, I didn’t get to do any real canning (taking care of a newborn is work, y’all!). Thankfully, our basement is still stocked with some canned tomatoes from the summer before so we’ve been working our way through the jars.
We had this salad a few weeks ago, just before fresh tomatoes hit here, and I cannot wait to make it again with a couple Cherokee Purple beauties (my favorite tomatoes of all time).
If you ever get sick of the typical BLT during the summer (…but really, who does) OR if you’d just like a little more green with your bacon + tomatoes, THIS is the dish for you.
It’s salad, but it’s totally carb-ed out and delicious, too. Lots of veggies, some crispy bacon for flavor, and crunchy croutons, perfectly toasted in the oven. This would also be incredible with a handful or two of basil tossed in with the arugula.
And for an extra kick, I make a super simple dijon salad dressing, to toss everything together and add just a little tangy bite.
Summer is for easy meals – the less indoor cooking, the better. Except for having the oven on for about 25 minutes, there’s nothing else. And if you really wanted to keep the house cool, you could totally cook the bacon + toast the bread on the grill!
Bacon, Tomato, and Arugula Panzanella
- 4 slices thick cut bacon
- 2 cups day old bread, cut into 1-inch cubes
- 1 Tbsp olive oil
- 1 tsp salt
- 2 cups diced tomato (fresh or good quality / homemade canned tomatoes, drained)
- 3 cups arugula
- 2 Tbsp olive oil
- 2 tsp white wine vinegar
- 1 tsp dijon mustard
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 1/4 tsp pepper
- Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
- Place the bacon on a foil or parchment lined baking sheet and bake at 400 for 12-15 minutes, or until as crisp as you like.
- Toss the cubed bread with the 1 Tbsp olive oil and salt and spread into a single layer on another baking sheet.
- Place the cubed bread in the oven during the last 7-9 minutes while the bacon is cooking.
- Put the tomatoes and arugula in a large bowl and set aside.
- In a smaller dish, mix the 2 Tbsp olive oil, white wine vinegar, dijon mustard, salt, and pepper together.
- Once the bacon and croutons are done, remove from the oven. Drop the bacon onto a paper towel covered plate and let cool for 5 minutes.
- When the bacon and croutons have cooled for a few minutes, crumble the bacon and add the pieces and the croutons to the tomatoes and arugula.
- Drizzle the dressing over the salad, and gently toss everything together.