Modena Balsamic Vinegar

Modena Balsamic Vinegar

Archive for the Category 'Recipes'

Italian Spinach Salad with apples

Wednesday, February 12th, 2014

This mouth-watering salad is among the top specialties of the famous Ristorante Venticello in San Francisco. It incorporates very well apples, pecorino cheese, pine nuts and all-time classic honey vinaigrette for an interesting flavor that you must try.

 

Ingredients:

-8 cups of baby spinach

-1/4 cup pecorino style cheese

-2 apples (any kind)

-1/2 cup pine nuts

-1/2 cup of balsamic vinegar (for the vinaigrette)

-1/2 cup honey (for the vinaigrette)

 

Steps:

-Make sure the oven is preheated to 375 °F or 190 °C.

-Wash the spinach leaves and leave it to dry for 5 minutes.

-Wash the apples and remove the core and the seeds. Then cut them into quarters.

-Roast the pine nuts in the preheated oven for 5 minutes, until golden brown.

-Make the vinaigrette in a bowl by mixing the balsamic vinegar and the honey.

-Mix the spinach leaves with the nuts and the vinaigrette in a bowl.

-Divide the salad into 4 small plates and put an apple slice on top of each.

-Top each serving with grated pecorino cheese.

Steamed asparagus and sliced Orange salad

Tuesday, July 01st, 2008

Fresh steamed asparagus and sliced Orange salad

Makes four portions.

Ingredients:

2oz shredded fresh Romaine lettuce
2 Fresh tomatoes that are fully ripened and cut into eighths
2 Fresh oranges, preferably large
8oz Fresh asparagus that has been cut into pieces that are 2” in size (ensure the spears are trimmed)
2tbs Extra virgin olive oil
½ tsp Sherry vinegar
To season, freshly ground pepper and salt

Method:

Steam the asparagus by placing in a pan of water, including some salt, and bring to boiling point. The asparagus should be perfectly cooked in about four minutes. When the stems feel tender remove from the water and drain under cold water.

Remove and set aside the zest from half of an orange. The remaining oranges should be should be peeled and segmented. Any juice that can be extracted from the remaining membrane should be kept to one side.

The dressing can be prepared by mixing together one tablespoon of the extracted juice along with the sherry vinegar, extra virgin oil, one teaspoon of the orange zest, salt and pepper to season. Place all the salad ingredients into a serving bowl, including the lettuce, tomatoes, asparagus and orange segments. When ready, dress the salad with the dressing and lightly toss so that the ingredients are coated.
steamed asparagus recipe

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Spring Healthy Salads

Monday, May 26th, 2008

Vegetables are in high demand in both markets and on dinner tables, due in part to their being appropriate for the season and appealing, and also thanks to the desire of many to return to eating healthy foods after having eaten lots of rich, starchy comfort foods throughout the winter. Besides the more traditional methods of preparing vegetables, such as grilling, roasting, sautéing, or steaming them, an alternative method of preparation is to serve them as crudit’s, served uncooked with a tasty dressing. Fresh, tender salad greens are complemented in an excellent manner by vinaigrettes or other salad dressings. Instead of spending money store-bought versions of salad dressing, however, you should use staples that are readily available in your own kitchen to create your own dressings. In this way, your dressing will be freshly-made, without any preservatives, and you can decide how much or how little you wish to make each time.

Dressings are also easy and simple to prepare. The following are several recipes and tips that you can use to create three basic types of salad dressing.

Vinaigrettes

While the saying that “oil and water do not mix” is a common one, in the case of vinaigrettes, oil and vinegar come together to create the perfect blend of ingredients. They mix to form a temporary emulsion that can be used to flavor and moisten delicate salads and greens.

Basic preparation: First, select a mildly acidic ingredient such as rice vinegar, dry un-oaked white wine, or orange juice. If your preference in tastes runs to the tart and assertive, then you should consider sherry or red wine vinegar. White wine vinegar falls between these two categories in terms of taste.

Oils can be classified as being neutral and having little flavor, such as canola oil or light olive oil, or they can be flavorful, in the case of sesame or hazelnut oils or the more peppery extra-virgin olive oils. If you prefer a more balanced flavor, then you can combine a flavorful oil with a more neutral one. In this way, the flavor of the oil will not overwhelm that of the other ingredients.

In order to counter the acidity of the vinegar, you must use the correct amount of oil. Most vinaigrettes use one part of vinegar for every three parts of oil, although some people use a one-to-one ratio or even a one-to-four ratio, depending on individual tastes.

Next, shape a damp towel into a ring and place a small bowl inside it. This will hold the bowl steady while you whisk its contents. Place the vinegar in the bowl and add a pinch of salt to it. Then, while whisking continuously, add the oil slowly, starting with drops before increasing the rate to a thin stream. This will ensure that the emulsion forms properly.

Variations: You can add ingredients such as mustard, garlic puree, minced shallots, or thick sauces like mayonnaise to the mixture to both stabilize the emulsion and add to its flavor. These extra ingredients should be added to the vinegar before you whisk the oil in. Adding a little mayonnaise to your vinaigrette will give it a gentle smoothness and a slight creamy appearance. Any ground spices that you intend to use should first be toasted and bloomed “light heated” in some hot oil. If you wish to use chopped, fresh herbs, however, you can simply add them just before you serve your dish.

vinaigrette, spring salad, oil and vinegar dressing

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A fig balsamic vinegar for warm chicken and spinach salad

Sunday, August 13th, 2006

This recipe comes from the Mercury news

posted Aug 9. 2006

A fig balsamic vinegar for Warm chicken and spinach salad peccadillo with raisins and olives Serves 4

Making the fig balsamic vinegar:
1/2 pound dried black figs
2 cups water
1/2 vanilla bean, split
1 1/4 Cups aged balsamic vinegar, or more as needed
1 orange, quartered (leave the peel on)
1/4 cup raw honey

For the chicken:
2 tablespoons fig balsamic vinegar or balsamic vinegar
2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
4 boneless, skinless chicken breast halves (5 to 6 ounces each)

For the salad:
1/2 cup fig balsamic vinegar (may substitute 1/2 cup balsamic vinegar and 1/2 teaspoon honey)
2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
1 large bunch spinach, stemmed
1 cup large green olives, pitted and halved
1/2 cup seedless raisins or dried currants
1/2 cup thinly sliced red onion
1 cup halved cherry or grape tomatoes
1 red bell pepper, roasted and coarsely chopped, optional (see Note)

Fig balsamic vinegar: In large, heavy-bottomed pan over medium to medium-low heat, place figs, water and vanilla bean. When bubbles just begin to break the surface, reduce heat to low and cook about 1 hour, until mixture becomes syrupy. Add the balsamic vinegar, orange and honey and increase heat to medium to medium-high. When mixture just starts to boil, turn off heat and let stand. When cool, pour into a large glass bowl, cover and refrigerate 2 to 3 days.
Strain mixture through colander into stainless steel or glass container, discarding orange pieces and vanilla bean and reserving figs, if desired, for other uses. If liquid seems sweet, add a couple of tablespoons of balsamic vinegar.

For the chicken: In re-sealable plastic food storage bag, combine 2 tablespoons fig balsamic vinegar, 2 tablespoons oil, salt and chicken. Press out as much air as possible, seal bag and knead gently to coat chicken. Refrigerate several hours or overnight.
To cook the chicken, preheat gas grill to medium or prepare charcoal grill for direct-heat cooking. Oil grate. Grill chicken until cooked through, about 5 minutes per side. (Alternatively, cook chicken in skillet.) Set aside.

For the salad: In small bowl, combine 1/2 cup fig balsamic vinegar, 2 tablespoons oil and salt and pepper to taste. Set aside.
In large bowl, combine spinach, olives, raisins or currants, onion, tomatoes and roasted red bell pepper, if desired, and mix. Cut chicken into thin strips or chunks and add to salad along with any accumulated cooking juices. Add dressing and toss to coat lightly. Serve immediately.
Note: To roast pepper, char it over flame of gas cooktop or under broiler. Let pepper blister and char on one side, then rotate it until most of skin is charred. Place charred pepper in bowl, cover with plastic wrap and let sit 15 minutes. Remove and discard charred skin, stem and seeds.

fig balsamic

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Skillet Saute Greens and Roasted Beets

Wednesday, July 26th, 2006

If you are looking for excellent and healthy side dish to your main dish, stop right here. The following is a recipe for a flavorful and filling side dish:

Sauté Greens and Roasted Beets

Serving size: Four

Ingredients
Five to Six (One bunch) medium colored red, orange, and gold beets with tops
Four Garlic Cloves
Four thyme or lemon sprigs
One Tbsp Olive Oil
One Tbsp Red Wine Vinegar (to taste)
Olive oil (to sprinkle)
Pepper and Salt (to taste)

Directions
Before Cooking Preparation
Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
Trim beets at both ends
Soak greens in a bowl of cold water until clean of any dirt (change water often until clean)
Scrub beets clean of dirt
Separate beets according to color

Cooking
Make four one foot foil sheets. Stack two sheets atop of one another creating a packet. In one packet place the red beets, place the gold and orange beets in the other. To each packet add two sprigs of thyme or lemon and two garlic cloves, then sprinkle each with pepper, salt, and oil. Encase the beets by folding the sides of the foil around the beets.

Place your packets onto a baking sheet (rimmed).

Place the baking sheet into the oven and roast for one hour to one hour and fifteen minutes. Test the beets for tenderness by using a skewer, set aside for five minutes.

Using a large skillet, heat one tbsp of olive oil until hot. Then add your wet beet greens into the skillet. Use caution, as they may splatter the olive oil. Sprinkle with pepper and salt, then tossing constantly, cook for one to two minutes. Greens should be a bright colored green.

Add red wine vinegar to your green, tossing once more.

Slice the cooked beets thin and arrange them nicely onto plates. Use tongs and take the greens out of the pan (be sure leave liquid in the skillet) and add the greens to every plate. Sprinkle salt on each to taste.

saute greens, oil and vinegar

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Tomato marinated with a delicious cucumber salad

Wednesday, July 26th, 2006

Marinated Cucumber Salad

The following recipe is for a terrific and healthy combination of marinated tomato with cucumber salad. Preparation time is fifteen minutes. Marinating time is at least four full hours. Serves up to eight servings.

Half cup vinegar (white-wine variety)
Three Tbsp sugar
One Tbsp Olive Oil
One Tsp Basil (dried)
Fourth Tsp Salt
Eighth Tsp Pepper
Two cups chopped tomatoes (equals three to four medium tomatoes)
Two cups chopped cucumber (Two large cucumbers)
Half cup finely chopped purple onion

Using a small jar, make the salad dressing. Combine the sugar, olive oil, vinegar, basil, pepper, and salt together. Cover the jar with lid and shake thoroughly. Set aside for later use.

Using a medium size bowl, combine chopped tomatoes, with juice, with chopped cucumbers and chopped onion.

Drizzle the dressing you created over the cucumber, tomatoes, and onion and toss until well coated. Cover the bowl with plastic wrap tightly and place in the refrigerator to marinate for a minimum of 4 to 24 hours prior to serving. This mixture can be kept covered and refrigerated for a maximum of three days.
marinated cucumber salad

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Fresh Herbed Vinaigrette

Sunday, June 11th, 2006

Herbed Vinaigrette

1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
4 tablespoons sherry vinegar
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
1 cup extra-virgin olive oil
1 tablespoon minced fresh basil
1 tablespoon minced fresh dill
2 teaspoons minced fresh chives
1 to 2 tablespoons water

Whisk together mustard, vinegar, salt and pepper. Slowly whisk in olive oil to create a smooth emulsion. Stir in basil, dill and chives. If the vinaigrette seems too thick, whisk in a tablespoon or so of water.

Kitchen Notes: This vinaigrette is a good, basic dressing that can be paired with any tossed salad. It will hold in the refrigerator up to 2 weeks.

Makes about 11/2 cups

From “Artisanal Cooking: A Chef Shares His Passion for Handcrafting Great Meals at Home” by Terrance Brennan and Andrew Friedman

herbed vinaigrette, vinaigrette dressing

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Salad Verde With Balsamic Vinegar And Olive Oil

Sunday, June 11th, 2006

Simple Salad Verde with Balsamic and Olive Oil

Ingredients:
4 cups crisp torn mixed salad greens of choice, cleaned and dried
4 green onions, sliced (include some green tops) or 1 small red onion, peeled, thinly sliced, and separated into rings or coarsely chopped
1 to 2 medium seedless orange(s), peeled and cut into sections or bite-size pieces, or 1 (11-ounce) can mandarin orange sections, drained
Small sprigs of parsley or cilantro
Salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
Balsamic vinegar and extra virgin olive oil as desired
Crisp croutons as desired for garnish (optional)

Prepare salad greens. Place greens in a zip-lock plastic bag, seal, and refrigerate until ready to serve. Turn salad greens into a large salad bowl or four individual salad bowls, dividing evenly. Add onions, orange pieces, and parsley or cilantro to greens in large bowl; sprinkle lightly with salt and toss lightly. Top each individual salad with one thinly sliced green onion and several orange pieces and 2 small sprigs of parsley or cilantro. Sprinkle each individual salad lightly with salt. Drizzle a small amount of balsamic vinegar and olive oil over salad in large bowl and toss mixture again lightly. Pass vinegar and oil for individual salads. May garnish with croutons, if desired.Makes 4 servings

Variations:
Omit orange(s); use 1 firm ripe medium tomato, cut into 8 equal-size wedges, or 8 ripe cherry tomatoes, each cut in half.
Add crumbled blue or goat cheese as desired.

Salad Verde with Balsamic

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