You’re probably asking yourself if those are indeed blackberries in this salad. Yes friends. Those are blackberries. There were two recipes sitting in our shared vault of dishes to share, and this was one of them. Make that three if you count the strawberry shortcake Amir made last year. We have said numerous times that the days, and sometimes months, slip away from us, and we miss the prime opportunities to share recipes when they are timely an at their peak. In the end, we have determined that even an untimely recipe posts deserves its time in the spotlight. Especially if it is easy to adapt using ingredients that are more readily available. That is why this salad with blackberries is here today.
One of the easiest ways you can make a basic salad intriguing and appetizing is by making your own dressing. There’s nothing wrong with stocking your favorite bottled variety, but it only takes a handful of basic pantry ingredients to make your own dressing in less than five minutes. The four main ingredients for our dressings are oil, vinegar or acid, a sweetener and an emulsifier. Olive oil and grapeseed oil are our two favorites as a base, and apple cider vinegar, red wine vinegar, white wine vinegar, balsamic vinegar or citrus juice are perfect for tang. Sweeteners can range from honey and agave to brown sugar or molasses. The most common emulsifier in our dressings is usually mustard, which helps to mesh the oil and vinegar as the two like to resist a combination without a bit of assistance. The dressing for the above salad featured freshly blended and strained blackberries blended with a few ingredients to create a sweet topping for a bed of greens, more berries, nuts and cheese. Now that we’re well into fall, appropriate substitutes could be figs, pomegranate juice and seeds, pears or even persimmon. We hope you’ll play around with this dressing to make your own special concoction for the season.
What is your favorite homemade salad dressing?
- 2 cups fresh blackberries, divided
- 2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
- 1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
- 2 tablespoons maple syrup
- ⅓ cup olive oil
- Fine sea salt
- 7 ounces salad greens
- 3 tablespoons slivered or sliced almonds, toasted
- 3 ounces goat cheese, cut into small pieces
- Place 1 cup of the blackberries into a food processor and blend until smooth, approximately 2 minutes. Reserve the remaining berries.
- Place a medium sized bowl under a fine sieve. Strain the mixture, pushing the juice through the mesh layer and into the bowl. Add the apple cider vinegar, Dijon mustard and maple syrup to the berry juice and whisk to combine. Slowly add the olive oil, whisking to incorporate. Season to taste with fine sea salt.
- Plate the salad greens on a serving dish or large bowl. Drizzle the dressing over the greens, lightly tossing to mix. Sprinkle the remaining berries on top, followed by the almonds and goat cheese. Serve immediately.
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