Saturday, November 20, 2010

Romaine Hearts with Basil Garlic Dressing

     Summer salads can be fun, tasty and elegant!  This salad is done in an uncomplicated, "clean" Italian style presentation.  The basil garlic dressing is a house dressing that I made at a small Italian restaurant several years ago.
     Basil Garlic Dressing Recipe:  Very finely mince a handful of fresh basil leaves.  (Drizzle a few drops of virgin olive oil on the basil as you mince so the color remains green instead of it turning an oxidized black color.)
     Place the minced basil into a small mixing bowl. 
     Add 4 cloves of minced garlic.
     Add an egg yoke. 
     Whisk virgin olive oil into the mixture one drop at a time till a mayonnaise starts to form.
     Pour a very thin stream of virgin olive oil into the dressing while whisking till a light basil green mayonnaise forms.
     Add a small squeeze of lemon juice. 
     Add sea salt and black pepper. 
     Whisk the dressing.  If the dressing is too thick, then add a little dash of warm water to thin the consistency.
     Recipe:  Place 2 romaine hearts in a plate. 
     Place a few plum tomato slices, sliced cucumber and black olive halves around the romaine. 
     Generously spoon the dressing over the romaine hearts. 
     Sprinkle some shaved parmesan cheese on the romaine. 
     Garnish with a basil sprig.
     Simple, delicious and healthy!  The basil garlic dressing has a strong flavor, with plenty of basil oil "bite."  This is a great salad to start an evening of fine dining!  ...  Shawna

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