Don’t you hate it when someone asks you to bring the salad to a big get-together? You start obsessing about the carrot-haters and the dressing and whether anyone is going to touch the salad when it’s surrounded by sausage balls, mac-n-cheese and garlic smashed potatoes.
Fear not! This is not the time to compromise your salad into mediocrity: a sad bowl of iceberg lettuce, tomatoes and cheddar cheese surrounded by bottles of salad dressing. Practically everyone loves Italian food, so go bold! Try this Chopped Antipasto Salad. It’s got loads of colorful veggies – lettuce, red onion, Roma tomatoes, cucumbers and pepperoncini – along with big-flavored showstoppers like pepperoni and mortadella, Gorgonzola, feta and olives. EVEN MEN EAT THIS SALAD. And dressing it early only helps the flavor.
I made this salad for Thanksgiving lunch at Mom’s, and she kept it. She sent me home with turkey, dressing, gravy, rolls, macaroni and cheese, sweet potato casserole and pie, but she kept the salad. All of it. This is the kind of salad you make room for.
Chopped Antipasto Salad
Adapted from Buca di Beppo
- 1 small head of iceberg lettuce, chopped
- 1 ounce (about 5 thin slices) pepperoni, diced*
- 1 ounce (about 5 thin slices) mortadella, diced*
- 1 ounce red onion, diced (about 1/8 cup)
- 1 ounce (1 sandwich slice) Provolone, diced
- 2 Roma tomatoes, diced
- 2 ounces cucumber, diced (about 1/3 cucumber)
- 1/4 cup Gorgonzola, crumbled
- 1/4 cup feta cheese, crumbled
- 2 pepperoncinis, chopped
- 1/2 teaspoon oregano
- 1/2 cup Italian vinaigrette dressing (recommended: Marie’s)*
- 3 whole pepperoncini
- 2 black olives
- 2 green olives
- Place the lettuce, pepperoni, mortadella, red onion, Provolone, 1 diced Roma tomato, cucumbers, Gorgonzola, feta, chopped pepperoncini and oregano into a mixing bowl. Toss.
- Add the dressing and toss again until fully incorporated.
- Mound salad mixture on a chilled plate, getting as much height as possible.
- Place the remaining tomatoes around the outside of the salad.
- Garnish with whole pepperoncini and olives, and serve.
*Gluten-Free Tip: Be sure to use GF deli meats and a GF Italian salad dressing.