Italian Summer Fruit Salad with Panetonne Croutons

I found this recipe on the Internet long ago, but I couldn't tell you where. The croutons make this salad.

1 cup diced Panettone bread, diced in 1/2 inch cubes (you can buy this bread at World Market)
2 tablespoons dried cherries
2 tablespoons diced dried apricots, 1/4-inch dice
2 tablespoons golden raisins
2 tablespoons honey
2 tablespoons champagne vinegar
4 to 5 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
1 large pear, peeled, cored and cut into slivers about 1/4-inch by 1 1/2-inches
1/4 large fennel bulb, about 3-ounces cut into slivers the same size as the pear
4 cups roughly torn curly endive
Salt and freshly ground pepper

Preheat the oven to 250 degrees. Scatter the Panettone cubes on a baking sheet and bake, tossing occasionally, until crisp and brown, about 1 hour. Be careful that they do not burn. Set aside.

Put the cherries, apricots, and raisins in a medium bowl. Measure the honey and vinegar into a small pan or microwave safe bowl. Heat together just until warm. Whisk in 4 tablespoons olive oil and taste for balance. Add the remaining 1 tablespoon oil, if necessary. Pour over the dried fruits. Add the pear, fennel, and salt and pepper to taste.

Pour the fruits and dressing over the greens in a salad bowl and toss well. Add the croutons and toss again.

Serve immediately.

Serves 4 - 6.

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