asparagus & arugula panzanella

serves 4 to 6

3 cups cubed baguette—day old is fine

1 bunch pencil-asparagus, rough ends trimmed

1 small tomato, cut into 8 wedges

3 ounces fresh mozzarella, diced

handful rocket arugula or other spicy green, rinsed & patted dry

4 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, plus more for roasting asparagus

2 tablespoon balsamic vinegar

a few drops of honey, to taste

salt and freshly ground pepper, to taste

Preheat oven to 400ºF. Spread bread cubes single layer on a rimmed baking sheet. Toast toast until very golden, about 8 to 10 minutes.

Meanwhile, add asparagus to a cast iron skillet, drizzle with some olive oil. Season with salt and peppers. When croutons are done, remove and set aside to cool. Add the skillet to the oven and roast until asparagus is just tender, about 5 to 7 minutes—make sure not to overcook. Remove from oven, let cool for a minute or two, then cut into 2-inch pieces.

In a deep bowl, whisk together the olive oil and balsamic vinegar. Add the honey and season with salt and pepper. Add the toasted bread cubes, asparagus, tomato, mozzarella and arugula to the bowl. Toss to coat well. Pile onto a large platter or divide among 4 to 6 small plates and serve immediately.