Saturday, August 6, 2011

Your New Best Friend-Basil Vinaigrette

Everyone has one really good best friend. You know the one... Everything is better when they are around, they make you smile just to look at them, and you never tire of their company. This is that best friend in food form! Everything is better with this vinaigrette!  You can use this for salads, for a marinade for meat or thick cut veggies. You can pair it with pasta salad, potato salad, or on top of quinoa. It is delicious drizzled over heirloom tomatoes with fresh mozzarella cheese slices. And the beautiful green color makes you feel happy just to see it,  like your best friend's smile! And  like your best friend is uniquely suited to you, this dressing can be changed to meet your specific taste.  Red pepper flakes, lemon juice, sun-dried tomatoes, mustard, or a different kind of vinegar would all work. Try an unusual variety of basil for a change. We would LOVE to hear what you do with this dressing!

Best-Friend Basil Vinaigrette                           

1 cup of fresh basil leaves
1 shallot or 1/4 onion
1 garlic clove
1/4 tsp salt
1/2 cup olive oil
 2 Tbsp. Champagne vinegar

Add all ingredients together and process in food processor or blender. Enjoy! 

To keep your basil fresh for longer place the cut ends in a jar, class, or even a vase with water. You can store in the fridge or on the counter. The fridge will last longer, but the counter will give your kitchen that deep, earthy, summer smell that only basil can offer.

Now for those beautiful tomatoes! Even if you only have a small amount you can make something with big taste! Of course they can stand on their own as a delicious taste of summer, but if you want to make something else this Roasted Tomato Sauce may be just the ticket!

Rustic Roasted Tomato Sauce

Place tomatoes and garlic cloves on a baking sheet and drizzle with olive oil. Stir to coat and place in an oven preheated to 425 degrees. Roast for 10-15 minutes or until the tomatoes are beginning to pop. Remove and place in blender or food processor. Add  a dash of salt, fresh herbs, and pulse until you have achieved desired consistency. This sauce can be used for dipping bread sticks, topping pizza, or of course tossing with pasta.  I love to use oregano, basil, and marjoram in my sauce. 

We hope you enjoy your week and that your share adds a splash of color and fun to your meals!

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