Sometimes, in summertime especially, I can’t be bothered with making salad dressing, but storebotten dressing is not an option where my palate is concerned. My mind thus set on homemade, I simplify the matters by adding pressed garlic directly to my salad and pouring balsamic vinegar and sunflower oil directly on top, using approximately 1 to 2 ratio. I swear to God, the difference between this and my regular garlic vinaigrette is marginal.
Other than that, my green salads adhere to pretty much the same pattern – they start with a salad mix, or, in this case, fresh lettuce from the garden.
Next, I always add a cut-up avocado to my salad – it adds texture and richness without adding crunch, which I am not a fan of, but, most importantly, it gives a wonderful buttery coating to the lettuce when the salad is tossed.
Same goes for cheese – I can’t see my salads without cheese, because, like avocados, they add creaminess and also a bit of bite. Until recently, I always used feta to this purpose, which added little bursts of salt throughout, but I have since fallen in love with blue cheese, which actually beats feta in creaminess department, and, with its sharp tang, gives my salad a whole new dimension and depth. Note that I prefer blue cheese marked as “Danish,” because it tends to be both milder and creamier than others blue cheese varieties. I crumble it in, and a lot of it, too.
Next, some garlic. Not known to be faint of heart, be it in the face of garlic, chocolate, or deer guts, I press 2 big or 4 small cloves right in.
Now go ahead and pour in some oil and balsamic vinegar in approximately 2:1 ratio. I use exclusively the sunflower oil pressed right down the road, just like back in the Old Country. With its nutty flavor and thick, rich consistency it has effectively expelled all other oils from my life. If you are used to bland, neutral supermarket varieties it might take a while adjusting to this, but once you do, there’s no going back. The difference between big-factory stuff and the real thing is paramount. Thank you, Josh and Noah, for making my life complete.
Next, give everything a vigorous toss right there in the serving bowl before you serve it. See how simple that was? Life’s too short for the bottled stuff.