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This dressing includes a trick I learned from a friend of the family [way] back in my 20's, and that is to blend 1/4 of a cup of red onion into the dressing (she was making a poppy seed dressing at the time).


I borrowed that trick and never looked back.  It gives your dressing such a depth of flavor while keeping everything else pretty basic.  It became such a favorite of my friends that we used to have 'Salad Dressing Night' when I lived in London, and just make batches of this!!

PREP TIME:  10 min

MAKES:  1 1/2 cups (360 ml) dressing

KEEPS:  2-3 weeks in refrigerator*

  • ¼ cup diced red onion

  • 1 clove garlic

  • 10 g fresh basil

  • 1 tsp salt

  • 1 tsp dried mustard

  • ¼ cup balsamic vinegar

  • 1 cup extra virgin olive oil

  • small squeeze of agave or dash of palm sugar, optional – use only if you feel your balsamic is too tart (vs. a sweeter/aged balsamic



1)  Blitz the first 5 dry ingredients together in a blender or food processor until finely minced (this is important - see Cook's Notes)


2)  Drizzle in the olive oil and vinegar and pulse a few times to mix it all together.

3) Taste and then decide if you need a small squeeze of something sweet.


4)  Pour into an airtight container and refrigerate.  Shake well before serving.


This dressing is great for ANY salad - pasta salads, whole grain salads, veggies etc.


So get creative and just lump a bunch of veggies and salad leaves into a bowl and garnish with cheese, sprouts, nuts, and seeds of choice for a well-balanced meal in a bowl!  Heck, I even use it to marinate chicken or season fish.


That said, I tend to make this specifically for my broccoli salad, kale salads, and spinach salads...But I'm sure you'll find your favorite!

My go-to dressing for Broccoli Salad.  I eat this once a week (if not more...especially if I'm on my own for dinner!)  :-)

Super Foods Salad of mixed broccoli, spinach, red onion, pumpkin seeds and parmesan cheese

Simple kale salad with whole grain croutons, tomatoes and red onion.

Chopped kale with sweet cherry tomatoes, red onion and homemade wholegrain croutons
Recipe & Photo Credit:  Cathy Menees




Dry ingredients first!  I made this once before by lumping everything into the blender at the same time and whizzing it at high speed.  The result was that the oil got whipped up and emulsified too quickly with the vinegar and the rest, which just resulted in an extremely thick paste that wouldn't thin out no matter what I tried.  So, very important, just blitz your dry ingredients first as they need a lot more 'whiz time' to get them nice and fine, THEN add the liquid and just pusle o few times to combine.  You'll want to shake this each time you take it out of the fridge anyway...and you can't shake (or pour) a thick paste!!



Our refigerator is set to 3 Celsius, which is about 37 Fahrenheit.  At that temperature, and stored in a caraffe with a tight-fitting lid, this dressing lasts easily 3-4 weeks.


*Refrigerators and storage containers vary, so just observe your own to get a feel for how long it will last.  You will know by the smell (or growning mold) when something is not right!



A good food processor or blender is neccesary to get the smoothness you want from a salad dressing made with fresh (vs dried) herbs and aromatics.  If you don't have one, then better have a sharp knife and don't be afraid to be happy with a slightly lumpy will still taste great!

Chickpea and Quinoa Tabbouleh
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