Pecorino and Breadcrumb Salad

pecorino, homemade-breadcrumbs, garlic, lemon, greens, fresh, healthy-salads

Romaine lettuce is the fresh crunchy canvas, but warm breadcrumbs and pecorino cheese are the real stars!  This is kind of a wonderfully simplified Caesar salad.  I found inspiration for this recipe last year when going to a friends birthday.  We were all providing a potluck-style dinner and I was supposed to bring the salad.  A quick scan over various food blogs led me to 101 Cookbooks.  Wow, what a deep collage of recipes and personal stories!  If you haven’t yet wondered around Heidi’s site, I highly suggest you start today.

Read Heidi’s version here.

pecorino salad: foodie with a life

Serves 3

Ingredients:

1 head Romaine lettuce, washed, cut into 1” pieces

3 slices artisan bread (such as sourdough or Pugliese), crusts removed

½ teaspoon garlic powder

1 teaspoon dried oregano

2 tablespoons olive oil

¼ cup freshly grated Pecorino-Romano cheese

Dressing:

2 oz lemon juice (about 1 lemon)

2 oz high quality extra-virgin olive oil

1/8 teaspoon red pepper flakes

½ teaspoon sea salt

½ teaspoon pepper

2 garlic cloves, minced

1 pinch sugar (optional)

Foodie Note:  Sometimes lemons seem extra sour; so if you taste the dressing and it almost hurts your tongue, give it a pinch of sugar to smooth the edges.  If you’re bringing this to a party like I did, make the dressing in a jar with a tight fitting lid and pre-toast the breadcrumbs, transport them in a jar as well.  Grated cheese goes in a small Ziploc bag.  Have salad clean and chilled but completely undressed.  Continue with Step 4 when you’re ready to serve.

breadcrumbs: foodie with a life

Directions:

1)    Tear bread into pieces.  Using a food processor, pulse bread until it becomes hearty crumbs.

2)    Heat 2 tablespoons olive oil in a cast-iron pan to medium heat.  Add bread, garlic powder, dried oregano and a pinch of salt.  Sauté until browned and fragrant, about 10 minutes.  Set aside.

3)    In a jar, combine all dressing ingredients.  Screw on lid, shake vigorously; taste, adjust salt/pepper if needed.

4)    In a large serving bowl, toss Romaine with dressing, a handful of breadcrumbs and half the cheese.

5)    Finish by topping the salad with the remaining breadcrumbs, cheese and a few grinds of pepper.   Enjoy!

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