Tastes of Summer (2003)

See Also
  Grilled Marinated Chicken with Tomato-Bread Salad (Panzanella)

The Chef
Tom Valenti of Cesca (Opening late June.)

Serves 4

Red-Wine Vinaigrette
1 cup red-wine vinegar
2 cups extra-virgin olive oil
1 shallot, minced
1 garlic clove, minced
1 teaspoon dried oregano
1 teaspoon dried thyme
1⁄3 cup grated Parmigiano-Reggiano
Salt and freshly ground black pepper

Grilled chicken
Two 21⁄2-to-3-pound chickens, quartered

Tomato-bread Salad
4 large beefsteak tomatoes
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
Sugar to taste
1 red onion, halved and thinly sliced
5 ounces bocconcini, halved, or cubed mozzarella
1 cup loosely packed basil leaves, chopped, torn, or shredded
2 cups cubed toasted peasant bread
1⁄2 cup red-wine vinaigrette

Cooking Instructions
Mix all the ingredients together in a bowl, and season with salt and freshly ground pepper to taste.

Set aside 1⁄2 cup of the vinaigrette. Put the chicken pieces in a bowl, and add enough of the remaining vinaigrette to cover, or place the chicken in a plastic bag with the vinaigrette. Allow to marinate for 2 to 3 hours in the refrigerator; bring to room temperature before grilling over medium coals. Sear on all sides, then move to a cooler spot on the grill to avoid flare-ups. tomato-bread salad Cut the tomatoes into 1-inch chunks, and season with salt, pepper, and a pinch of sugar. Let the mixture sit for 10 minutes, then add the onion, bocconcini, basil, and cubed bread to a bowl. Add 1⁄3 cup vinaigrette, toss together, and allow the salad to sit for 20 minutes, adding more vinaigrette if necessary.

Photograph by Beatriz Da Costa