Traci Des Jardins’s Warm Bread Salad with Roasted Baby Artichokes and Marinated Crescenza, as seen on Guy's Ranch Kitchen Season 6.
Recipe courtesy of Traci Des Jardins

Warm Bread Salad with Roasted Baby Artichokes and Marinated Crescenza

Getting reviews...
  • Level: Intermediate
  • Total: 1 hr 10 min
  • Active: 1 hr 5 min
  • Yield: 4 servings
This recipe became iconic at Jardinière, one of those dishes that just could not be taken off the menu for 21 years. It stood the test of time and was as popular in the waning days of the restaurant as it was in the beginning. Warm, toasty, torn bread, nutty crisp artichokes, creamy cow’s milk cheese. Positively addictive.



  1. Place the Crescenza into a flat-bottomed glass vessel. Combine the Italian parsley, thyme and chopped basil with 1/4 cup olive oil in a small bowl. Pour over the cheese and season well with salt and pepper. (This may be done up to 3 days in advance. Cover and refrigerate if making in advance, and bring back to room temperature before proceeding.) Set aside.
  2. In a small bowl, place about 1 cup water with the juice of the lemon; this is called an acid bath and prevents foods which change color when exposed to air from doing so. “Turn” the artichokes by removing the tough outer leaves with a knife and trimming any of the tough green parts away. Cut in half and remove the chokes. Place the artichokes into the acid bath as you work.
  3. When all the artichokes have been prepared, slice them to 1/8-inch thick. Place 2 tablespoons olive oil in a sauté pan and heat over medium heat. Add the artichokes and season with salt and pepper. Allow the artichokes to cook until a nice golden brown and no longer al dente, 5 to 7 minutes. Remove from the pan and allow to drain on a paper towel.
  4. Make the vinaigrette by whisking together the balsamic vinegar and 1/4 cup olive oil in a small bowl. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Cut the remaining basil into a chiffonade, or little strips, and mix with the greens in a large mixing bowl.
  5. Tear the bread into 1/2-inch pieces. Place the remaining 2 tablespoons olive oil in a large sauté pan and add the bread. Season well with salt and pepper and cook until golden brown, 3 to 4 minutes. Add the artichokes and heat until warm, about 1 minute. Add the warm artichokes and bread to the greens in the mixing bowl and dress with the vinaigrette; season well. Present on large individual plates with three pieces of cheese around the perimeter of each or on a big platter with the cheese underneath the salad or tossed into the salad.