Saturday, January 15, 2011

Day 96.5 - Winter Micro Greens with Maple Balsamic Dressing

Yesterday was such a pearl of a day. My friend Meg hooked me up with a bag of some of the most spectacular winter field greens I've ever seen from the Natick Organic Community Farm. Then I went to visit Hopestill Farm in Sherborn, owned an operated by my friend Richard Robinson, where he picked me a beautiful bag of baby spinach. Truly, with 20" of snow on the ground, these greens were like winter jewels.

With delicate greens like these, a simple dressing is all you need. In fact, a squeeze of lemon or a little extra virgin olive oil would probably be just fine. But the recipe that follows is a family favorite and my daily go-to dressing, inspired by my sister who lives in Vermont, and by my Mom who taught me everything I know about good, honest cooking.  It was perfect for these much so, that after I shot the pictures this morning, I had the salad for breakfast!

Here's the thing - this dressing is as easy and quick to make as opening a bottle of slimy store bought salad dressing, but without all the preservatives, calories and food coloring. Admittedly, there are some decent brands on the market, but I think that once you try this recipe, you'll only turn to the bottled stuff in moments of deep dressing desperation.

A quick disclaimer about the measurements for this dressing. I never measuring anything - I pour a little, taste a tad, season a smidgen and adjust a bit...I've tried to give you close to exact measurements, but your preference for sweetness, tangyness and seasoning will dictate which proportions you want to use. Go with what I've listed here, but tweak it to your personal taste!

Maple Balsamic Dressing

2/3 cup extra virgin olive oil
1/4 cup good quality balsamic vinegar
3/4 Tbsp. maple syrup
1 Tbsp. coarse grain mustard
Juice of 1/2 lemon
sea salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste

Add all ingredients in a bowl, cup or cruet and whisk to emulsify. Taste for seasoning and correct as desired.

Somebody tell me what function my son's belt actually has!?

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