Italian Chopped Salad
- Sweet Italian Dressing:
- 1/2 cup red wine vinegar
- 2 tablespoons honey
- 1 teaspoon dried Italian seasoning
- 2 cloves garlic, smashed and chopped
- Salt and freshly cracked black pepper
- 1/2 cup olive oil
- 1 pound bacon
- 2 cups ditalini pasta, cooked al dente and cooled
- 1 cup crumbled gorgonzola
- 2 hearts romaine, chopped
- 1/4 small head red cabbage, chopped
- 1/4 head iceberg, chopped
- 1 to 2 large tomatoes, chopped
- 1/2 small red onion, minced
Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
For the dressing: Place the vinegar, honey, Italian seasoning, garlic and some salt and pepper in a blender or food processor. While the machine is running, slowly drizzle the olive oil until the dressing is combined and emulsified. Adjust the seasoning if necessary, or add more oil if you want it less acidic.
For the salad: Lay out the bacon in rows on the prepared baking sheet. Place in the oven on the upper rack and cook until crisp, 10 to 15 minutes. Once it is nice and crispy, chop it up for your salad.
In a large bowl, combine the bacon, pasta, gorgonzola, romaine, cabbage, iceberg, tomatoes and red onions. Add the dressing and toss together until all is well coated. Taste and adjust the seasoning.
Recipe courtesy Jeff Mauro