Tomato & Pancetta, Bresse Blue & Arugula Salad

Difficulty: Moderate
Time: 40 minutes
Serves: 4


  • 4 slices pancetta
  • 2 Virtuoso® Beefsteak Tomatoes, quartered
  • 2 cups baby arugula
  • 4 oz Bresse blue cheese or Cambozola
  • ¼ cup olive oil
  • 1 clove garlic, finely minced
  • 1 small baguette, cut into 1 inch cubes
  • ¼ tsp Kosher salt


  • ¼ cup rice vinegar
  • 1 tsp Dijon
  • 1 small shallot, finely minced
  • ½ cup extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 clove garlic, finely minced
  • ½ tsp Kosher salt
  • ground pepper, to taste

A grown up and deconstructed Virtuoso® Beefsteak Tomato BLT. If pancetta is unavailable, good quality bacon can be substituted. This recipe also works well with goat cheese instead of blue cheese!


  1. Pre-heat oven to 375ºF.
  2. Place pancetta slices on a baking sheet topped with parchment paper. Bake for 10-12 minutes or until crisp. Remove and drain on paper towels.
  3. In a small bowl, whisk together rice vinegar, Dijon, garlic and shallot. Slowly whisk in olive oil and season with salt and pepper.
  4. Place ¼ cup of olive oil on a baking sheet in 375ºF oven. Heat for 2 minutes, carefully remove and place cubed bread in the oil.
  5. Return baking sheet to oven and toast for 3 minutes. Carefully remove baking sheet and turn the croutons. Return to oven for another 3 minutes. Remove from oven and transfer to a bowl. Toss with garlic and salt.
  6. To assemble salad, divide arugula and tomatoes between 4 plates. Drizzle with dressing and add a piece of pancetta to each. Break Bresse cheese into pieces and sprinkle onto salads. Finish each salad with warm croutons and serve.