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RECIPE:  BALSAMIC VINAIGRETTE

This is a near-daily staple in our house as salads are an easy way to get your daily greens & veggies...especially when you're in a rush and don't have time to cook a side.

This salad dressing takes 3-5 minutes to make, and tastes 100% better than anything from a store (i.e. no xanthan gum aftertaste..nor any other factory-made chemical)!

And is SO VERSATILE - you can use it for a simple side salad, a Greek salad, or more 'big salad meals' like my broccoli salad or chop salad.  See below for inspiration.

I have this on hand year round!

PREP TIME:  3-5 min

MAKES:   1 1/4 cups (300 ml)

INGREDIENTS

  • 1 cup (240) ml olive oil

  • ¼ cup (60 ml) balsamic vinegar
  • 1 tsp Dijon mustard

  • 1 tsp honey or agave*

  • 1 tsp salt

  • 1 sachet TASTE OF TUSCANY spice blend

PREPARATION

 

1) Whisk first 5 ingredients together in a bowl, then transfer to an airtight container.

 

2) Heat a pan over medium-high heat and when hot, add the TUSCANY spice blend and 1 TBSP olive oil.

 

3)  Cook for ONE MINUTE, stirring frequently, until the blend becomes golden brown.

 

4)  Add the toasted spices to the container with the dressing and shake well to combine.

 

refrigerate until ready to use

SERVE
SIMPLE SIDE SALAD

with fresh butter lettuce, tomatoes and red onions

PASTA SALAD

Mix with cooked whole-grain penne pasta, black olives, sundried tomatoes, pine nuts, and parmesan cheese, topped with fresh basil.

BROCCOLI SALAD

Make a salad with fresh broccoli, spinach, red onion, parmesan cheese & toasted pumpkin seeds, toss with dressing and let sit 10 minutes to soften.

GREEK SALAD

Make a salad with bite-sized chunks of cucumber, red, yellow & orange bell peppers, red onion, feta cheese and black olives, toss with dressing and let sit 10 minutes to soften.

Click for GREEK SALAD RECIPE
Click for GREEK SALAD RECIPE

A STURDY SALAD with a huge nutrient and antioxidant punch.

CHOPPED SALAD

Make a salad with chopped zucchini (courgette), carrot, red bell pepper, red onion, spinach, cherry tomatoes, parmesan cheese, toasted pumpkin seeds, , toss with dressing and let sit 10 minutes to soften.

*HONEY/AGAVE

You need a bit of sweetness to balance the acidity of the vinegar.  That said, it will depend on your taste buds AND your vinegar.

An aged balsamic vinegar will be sweeter (and more expense) than a young one.

 

So, you may or may not decide you need honey.  Just taste it and adjust to your personal preference.

STORING

This will keep for at least 2 weeks in your fridge….but I bet you’ll love it so much it will be gone before that!

COOK'S NOTES

Recipe & Photo Credit:  Cathy Menees

Recipe & Photo Credits:  Cathy Menees

Chickpea and Quinoa Tabbouleh