We love pizza and pasta with all our heart, but it's important to remember there's so much more to Italian cuisine than those rich, filling, carb-heavy dishes! To switch things up a bit, we want to introduce you to some of the lighter and fresher dishes Italy has to offer, so we've gathered some of our favorite recipes for Italian inspired salads. Whether you serve these as side dishes or as your main course, they're guaranteed to satisfy the appetite of everyone at your table!
Umbrian-Style Arugula and Pear Salad
Like most Umbrian food, this Arugula and Pear Salad is pleasantly rustic. With subtly sweet flavors, a little crunch from the pine nuts and the right amount of freshness from the pears, this salad makes for a perfectly balanced and refreshingly bright meal!
Arugula, Tomato and Napoli Fried Dough Salad
In Italy they call it, Angioletti Fritti con Rucola e Pomodori, which translates "Fried Angels with Arugula and Tomatoes." This simple fresh salad of tomatoes, arugula, lots of garlic, and oregano is topped with crispy, heavenly fried dough (or angels!). You can think of this salad as a deliciously deconstructed (and possibly healthier??) version of pizza!
Tricolore Salad with Grapefruit Vinaigrette
If we had to choose a few words to describe this Tricolore Salad with Grapefruit Vinaigrette, we'd use Sweet, Acidic, Savory and Downright Delicious. Though simple in its ingredients, this salad is amazingly fresh and full of flavor. To make it a complete meal, pair with a glass of white wine and fresh bread and butter—you can thank us later!
With its deep Tuscan origins and wild popularity in other parts of central Italy, we figured it's about time we shared a recipe for Panzanella! Panezanella, is a delicious salad typically comprised of bread, onions, and tomatoes. Made with pancetta, cranberries and pine nuts, this particular panzanella recipe is a little heartier, breaks slightly from tradition in terms of ingredients, and is geared more towards cooler weather!
Images by Saveur.