After a week of eating only carbs, I am in dire need of a salad right about now. I know so many of you are making sourdough, so this salad with crispy shallots and homemade croutons is a great way to repurpose leftover sourdough bread, or any other crusty bread you may have laying around. I love nothing more than a super crispy crunchy shallot. There’s a hint of sweetness before the salty, and I’m a firm believer that salad needs a combination of textures and flavors–crunchy, salty, acidic.
How are you doing? Am I the only one eating mostly pasta? It’s been really hard to find meat, so I’ve been forced to eat less of it. I’m not complaining, but we always crave the thing we can’t have. I’m erring on the cautious side, so I only use curbside pickup for groceries or other goods, meaning that I have little choice in finding those elusive items (I’m looking at you chicken!). Luckily, I’ve been able to find some of these things at neighborhood restaurants who are selling produce and meat. It’s been a real godsend this week.
Because we are all struggling, I thought the perfect feel good meal would be a lovely crunchy salty salad. This serves two as an entree or four as an appetizer. I use a simple vinaigrette with lemon juice, and sprinkled on some shaved parmesan and crispy shallots. Plus I show you how to make your own croutons! See the full recipe below.
- ½ a loaf of sourdough or 3 cups crusty bread, cubed
- 4 tbsp olive oil
- kosher salt
- half a head of romaine lettuce, chopped (about 5 cups)
- 5 tbsp olive oil, divided
- 2 tbsp red wine vinegar
- juice of half a lemon
- 2 tsp dijon mustard
- kosher salt and black pepper
- 2 shallots, thinly sliced
- ¼ cup grated or shaved parmesan cheese
- Preheat the oven to 425 F. Cut any very tough crust off the sourdough, then tear or dice the bread into one inch pieces. Place the bread cubes on a baking sheet and drizzle with 4 tbsp of olive oil. Then sprinkle with a couple pinches of salt and toss the bread in the oil to coat. Bake for 15-20 minutes in the upper third of the oven, or until the bread is browned and crisp.
- Place the chopped romaine in a large salad bowl. Meanwhile, in a bowl or measuring cup, whisk together 4 tbsp of the olive oil, red wine vinegar, lemon juice, dijon, and a pinch of salt and pepper. Set aside.
- In a medium skillet over medium high heat, add the remaining 1 tbsp olive oil. Once hot and shimmering, add your sliced shallots, and cook, stirring frequently, until softened and browned, about 7 minutes. If they begin to burn, turn the heat down to medium low and add a teaspoon of water. Once softened and browned, add a couple pinches of salt.
- Dress the romaine with the whisked dressing, pouring in a little at a time until the salad is just coated and the leaves are glossy. You may not use all the dressing. Add a couple pinches of salt and toss. Add the shallots, parmesan, and some of the croutons, as desired, and toss again. Top with fresh ground pepper and serve immediately. This serves 2 as an entree or 4 as an appetizer.