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May 20, 2012 / Leslie

Weekend Cooking: Balsamic Vinaigrette with Basil

This is one of my favorite salad dressings. It’s easy to make and tastes so much better than anything you can buy in the store.


Balsemic Vinaigrette

• ½ cup olive oil
• 3 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
• 1 garlic clove, crushed
• 1 tablespoon minced fresh basil
• 1 teaspoon dijon mustard
• ½ teaspoon sea salt
• ¼ teaspoon ground pepper


In a small bowl combine above ingredients. Whisk in the oil until smooth.

You can vary the ingredients according to taste. A 3 or 4 to 1 ratio of oil to vinegar is best. Start with that and add more vinegar if desired.

The dijon mustard is an emulsifier, it keeps the oil and vinegar from separating. I only use a small amount because too much mustard will overpower the dressing.

For a less garlicy taste, instead of crushing the garlic clove in a press, pierce it with a knife and let it sit in the oil for about an hour and remove before adding the oil to the ingredients. Another option is to add a teaspoon or two of minced parsley, which will cut the intensity of the garlic.

The dressing will keep in the refrigerator for a few days.

Basil Vinaigrette Salad

I poured this over my home grown lettuce and it was delicious. The fresh basil and the baby greens are readily available in most grocery stores and farmer’s markets, however they are simple to grow and don’t require a lot of space. Even though I have a yard, I grow my lettuce and herbs in barrels outside my back door. Mostly because of bunny problems, but it’s also nice to have them right off the deck.

Weekend Cooking is hosted by Beth Fish Reads. Participation is open to anyone who has any kind of food-related post to share: Book (novel, nonfiction) reviews, cookbook reviews, movie reviews, recipes, random thoughts, gadgets, fabulous quotations, photographs.
© 2012 Under My Apple Tree. All rights reserved.



Leave a Comment
  1. Eleenie / May 20 2012 2:13 am

    My lettuce is almost ready, I love them but prefer some dressing drizzled over first. I’ll give this dressing a try, I love garlic and mustard,


    • Leslie / May 20 2012 8:53 am

      I think poured was the wrong word to use. I only put 2 small spoonfuls and then tossed it a bit.


  2. Beth F / May 20 2012 5:13 am

    My yard is too shady for most vegetables but I do grow a variety of herbs, some in garden and some in pots. This looks lovely and very similar to my favorite dressing, which uses oregano. I’ll have to post my recipe once my CSA begins (on Tuesday!) and I start getting lovely, fresh lettuce.


    • Leslie / May 20 2012 8:56 am

      I’m always looking for new recipes for dressings. I have a huge barrel of oregano too so I’ll be watching for yours.


  3. Leeswammes / May 20 2012 5:18 am

    So nice, growing your own lettuce! Well, if you like the stuff. Here in my family we’re not so keen…

    It’s nice to see another way to use basil. My sons and I are growing basil and mint in containers on the attic window sill (lots of sun!) and I’m sure we’re going to have LOADS of it when they’re ready to pick. 🙂


    • Leslie / May 20 2012 9:01 am

      That’s the nice thing about basil, it will even grow in a sunny window. I have an entire barrel devoted to basil. As soon as the plants get a little bigger I’ll make my pesto sauce.

      You don’t like lettuce? Maybe you’d like some of my other veggies. I’m growing several varieties of tomato, cucumbers, broccoli, zucchini, acorn squash, sweet peppers and green beans. My family jokes that I should have been a farmer!


  4. BermudaOnion / May 20 2012 7:02 am

    The dressing sounds delicious. Our olive oil store sells flavored olive oil and balsamic vinegar and I bet it would be delicious made with them. Your salad looks delicious too!


    • Leslie / May 20 2012 9:02 am

      I love those herb infused oils. They usually look so pretty in those glass bottles that I don’t want to open them!


  5. lakesidemusing / May 20 2012 8:25 am

    Fresh dressings always make a salad taste better! Think I’ll try this one today..


  6. sawcat / May 20 2012 7:50 pm

    I’ve been thinking of trying something like this to try and cut back on the dairy in my diet (I normally use blue cheese dressing). Sounds like a good marinade as well. Thanks for sharing, I will have to try this.


  7. Carole / May 20 2012 11:01 pm

    sounds yummy!


  8. Suko / May 21 2012 7:25 pm

    This sounds incredibly good and healthy. And no surprise, your photos are stunning!


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