Wednesday, May 16, 2012

Garlicky Greek Vinaigrette

We ended up having last minute house guests (much-loved family members) arrive on Friday night. As happy as we were to have them here, we were so busy that I never had a chance to pop onto my laptop and check in with the blogosphere. And, since we went out for dinner or ordered in each night they were here, I did absolutely zero cooking over the weekend.

They headed for home on Sunday morning, but alas poor Hubbs woke up feeling deathly ill, with what I believe was that nasty stomach bug that seems to be making it's way around the universe right now. Suffice it to say that I had a pretty quiet Mother's Day, spent taking care of my sick sweetie, catching up on laundry and getting the guest room back in "ready mode" for the next time we have visitors. Luckily, Hubby felt well enough by Sunday evening to keep down a little tea and dry toast, but that was the extent of my food preparation for the weekend. Until yesterday, that is...

We had warm, muggy days from Friday night through Sunday, that have since turned into warm, muggy, rainy weather today and the way I tend to respond to close, cloying days like these, is to shoot for something that's easy to prepare, requires little to no stovetop or oven time and doesn't fill us up with multiple courses. One of the first things that came to my mind was pasta salad. It is "that time of year", after all. Hmmm... Why is it that I don't really make pasta or potato salads during the colder months??

Anywhoooo... In order to make a pasta salad, one usually needs some sort of dressing to moisten it and give it some pizazz. I love a classic macaroni salad made with mayo, but I didn't think Hubby's tummy was quite ready for that. I've been wanting to make a pasta salad for a while now and I've also had a bit of a craving for Greek salad. So, why not a Greek pasta salad? Here's the recipe for my Garlicky Greek Vinaigrette. The recipe for the salad itself will follow this post. (HERE)

Garlicky Greek Salad Dressing
(amounts are below)
  • Olive or Vegetable Oil
  • Cider or Wine Vinegar
  • Lemon Juice
  • Lemon Zest
  • 2-4 Cloves Garlic
  • Fresh Parsley
  • Dried Oregano
  • Sugar
  • Kosher Salt & Freshly Ground Black Pepper

The key to all good basic vinaigrettes is to follow a few simple "rules". Once you know these, you can make endless and delicious combinations to dress salads and marinate and/or baste meats or vegetables.
  • Always use three parts oil/fat to one part acid.
  • Additions like mustard and egg yolk help to thicken and emulsify a dressing.
  • The sky's the limit when it comes to herbs and spices.
  • A little bit of white or brown sugar will help to balance out the acidity.
  • Just about any kind of vinegar and/or citrus juice can be used as the acid in a vinaigrette.

Single Recipe Measurements:
  • 1 cup of olive oil
  • 1/3 cup White Balsamic Vinegar
  • the juice from 1/2 of a small lemon
  • the zest from that lemon
  • 3 small cloves of garlic
  • a tablespoon or so of fresh parsley
  • 1 teaspoon of dried oregano
  • 1 teaspoon of granulated sugar
  • a healthy pinch of Kosher salt and
  • a good grinding of black pepper
I just throw all of the ingredients, except the oil and vinegar, into the food processor and give it several pulses until it resembles a thick paste. Then I add the vinegar and drizzle in the oil, as the processor is running.

I highly recommend that you make a double or even triple recipe for this dressing. It's great for all kinds of salads and it makes an excellent marinade for grilled meats and vegetables.

When using this as a dressing for pasta salad, pour 1/3 to 1/2 of the dressing over the cooked and slightly cooled pasta and pop it in the fridge for an hour or so. It will absorb into the pasta and deepen the flavor of the finished salad. Add the rest of the dressing a few minutes before serving.



Opa!-pa-sta Salad recipe HERE

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  1. This looks amazing. I just bought a whole bunch of pasta on BOGO at our local market, so I may have to whip this up over the weekend! We'd love for you to link up with us for Tasty Tuesday over at!

  2. Replies
    1. Absolutely! I almost think I could drink this stuff. LOL Thanks for stopping by!

  3. I love the idea of making my own dressing. I tend to associate certain foods with the seasons...and pasta salads are definitely on the spring/summer list. But my husband thinks I'm strange for not cooking certain meals if it's not the "right" season for it. But who wants hot chili in the summertime? I just made my first pasta salad of the season today. I can't wait to try your dressing and your greek pasta salad! Thanks for sharing them both at Show & Tell.

    Sharon @ mrs. hines class

    1. I know what you mean, Sharon. The last thing I want to do is make a hot pot of anything in the summer! BUT, I've always made one exception for my daughter. (and still do, if she's home at the right time) My chili has been her "birthday meal" since she was 10 or 11 years old and she's a July baby. LOL That's also why I made a big pot of Sunday Gravy a couple of weeks ago. Now all I have to do if we want spaghetti & meatballs in the middle of summer, is go grab it out of the freezer! I hope you'll stop back and let me know if you decide to give the dressing and/or the salad a try!

  4. YUM! can't wait to try this delicious looking dressing :) Thanks for sharing. Have a great weekend.

  5. Your post was the most viewed link this week! Congratulations!! Thanks for sharing at Wednesday Whatsits.

  6. Wow I bet this tastes great yummy :) Thanks for linking up to Creative Mondays have a lovely week :)

  7. I LOVE pasta salads as well...especially this time of year! I'm going to have to save this recipe as one to try! Looks fresh and delicious! Hope everyone is on the mend now! Thanks for linking up and sharing with us @ Toot Your Horn Tuesday! Looking forward to what you have to share with us next!


  8. Hi Mary,
    This is a lovely Vinaigrette that is full of wonderful flavor. Hope you have a special week end and thank you so much for sharing with Full Plate Thursday.
    Come Back Soon!
    Miz Helen

  9. This does look amazing. We love that Greek vinaigrette flavour and I'm thrilled to have a recipe to try.


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