In just 10 minutes you can prepare this refreshing, yet simple herbed balsamic honey vinaigrette to enjoy on savory or fruity salads.
This dressing is extra-good with the fresh basil and rosemary in my garden right now. To use dried basil and rosemary, make the dressing at least a half hour in advance so that the herbs have a chance to hydrate.
I like to use this intensely-flavored dressing to marinate pecans, which I then bake into a flavorful salad topper.
Tips for making the dressing
For this batch of the dressing, I prepared the ingredients for anyone who doesn’t have a food processor. I grated the shallot, pressed the garlic, and chopped the herbs very fine. If you use a food processor, just slice the garlic and shallot and let the food processor do the rest.
Also in this batch I added some cumin for extra flavor. You will see that cumin isn’t in the ingredients – we decided the dressing was better without it.
What is balsamic vinegar?
Balsamic vinegar is traditionally made from grape “must”, or the grape skins and seeds – this is why it typically has some sediment at the bottom and is a deep brownish color. It can contain probiotics and have some other health benefits. The less expensive the balsamic vinegar, though, the more likely it is to be red wine vinegar with caramel coloring.
According to GourmetSleuth, White Balsamic Vinegar is made from white wine vinegar made from Trebbiano grapes grown in the Modena region of Italy combined with concentrated, uncooked grape must.
White balsamic works well in salad dressings and in any sauce where a red vinegar is undesirable. White balsamic is less sweet than the traditional and I like to use it in my lemony-garlic mustard vinaigrette.
How can I keep my balsamic vinaigrette from separating?
Often an olive-oil dressing will separate, especially when refrigerated, when the olive oil tends to form a semi-solid layer on top.
Adding an emulsifier can help keep it from separating. This dressing contains honey and aquafaba as emulsifiers. The honey also adds a bit of sweetness, though the balsamic vinegar can be sweet also.
If you have used fresh herbs, the dressing will be ready to use as soon as you have whisked it together.
I hope you will enjoy this simple salad dressing as much as we do, and leave me a comment so that I know how it went!
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In just 10 minutes you can prepare this refreshing, yet simple herbed balsamic honey vinaigrette to enjoy on savory or fruity salads. Gluten and dairy free.
- 1 small shallot, grated, about 2 tablespoonfuls
- 2 cloves garlic, pressed
- 1 teaspoon of dijon mustard
- 1 tablespoon of honey
- 1–2 teaspoons aquafaba or extra honey, see note
- ⅓ cup of balsamic vinegar
- ⅓ cup of olive oil
- 1 ½ tablespoons of chopped fresh basil
- ½ tablespoonful chopped rosemary
- ½ teaspoon sea salt
- 6 cranks of fresh cracked pepper or to taste, about ½ teaspoonful
- Add the shallots, garlic, mustard, honey, aquafaba, salt, pepper and balsamic vinegar to a bowl and whisk together. Slowly drizzle in the olive oil while continuing to whisk.
- Once the dressing is emulsified, stir in the basil and rosemary.
- Alternatively, combine all ingredients in a small immersion-blender type food processor and blend until smooth.
Aquafaba is the leftover cooking water from garbanzo beans. We save ours in tablespoonfuls in ice cube trays in the freezer. Then we add a cube to each batch of salad dressing. Both aquafaba and honey help the salad dressing emulsify, which means they help keep the oil and water layers from separating.
This recipe is modified from one by Chef Billy Parisi.
Keywords: balsamic vinegar, balsamic vinaigrette, balsamic-honey vinaigrette, easy salad dressing, olive oil, olive oil dressing, honey dressing, fresh herb dressing, basil, rosemary
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