It appears most of the country is either covered in snow or has crazy cold temperatures. We did get a little on Saturday, but not nearly as bad as other parts of the country. We had enough for a snowball fight in the backyard (I won), but not enough to use the snow blower. I am hoping that it melts soon. I have grown accustomed to the mild winters of Colorado. It was in the 50’s pretty much all last week.
I am all for being healthy, but it has to taste good. I almost never make salads at home, because they don’t turn out like their restaurant counterparts. I am not one to add cheese and all the creamy dressings, so I don’t think it is the toppings. After some trial and error, I figured out that it all has to do with the lettuce. Dry lettuce is the key to a good salad. In the past, I have just rinsed the lettuce, chopped, and put immediately in a salad. The dressing doesn’t stick, and it is never good. So whether it is a salad spinner or drying with paper towel; making sure there is no moisture is an important step.
The other thing that leads to a good salad? The dressing. I am talking about a quick and easy homemade vinaigrette. I haven’t found any creamy dressings that I like, so I like creating different vinaigrettes depending on what I am putting in my salad. For this spinach salad I used balsamic vinegar and a garlic olive oil, a little Dijon mustard for tang and it was perfect. You can really top your salad with whatever you want, but I went for avocado, chicken, pepitas, shredded carrots, and caramelized onions. This salad is hearty enough to have for dinner or lunch. I doubled the recipe for the dressing, so I have some sitting in my fridge for my lunch tomorrow too.
Garlic Balsamic Vinaigrette
**I have an on going relationship with STAR Fine Foods for recipe development. All thoughts and opinions are 100% my own.