7.10.2011

Tea Party Salad

Every year my mom would have a Holiday Tea Party, she would invite all her friends, and spend the entire morning baking cookies. My sister and I were, of course, there to help and when she told us a couple years ago that she wasn’t going to be having it anymore, we were horrified. Being the industrious young ladies that we are, we took the Holiday Tea over and decided to make it a just a little fancier. Instead of just cookies, we made an entire spread including teensy sandwiches, dips, cookies, cakes and the star ended up being this salad that I threw together at the last minute, just so that I wouldn’t feel as bad for eating ALL those sweets!

It’s all because of this versatile vinaigrette. You can use this recipe as a base for more complex dressings or alter in a little for a different flavor.  I will give some alternate recipes below.
2 Lemon's Juice
1 Lemon's Zest
Olive Oil (Double the lemon juice)
Shallots*
Fresh Thyme
Salt & Pepper

Yup that’s it. You don’t really need to ever buy salad dressing again.

Micro-plane and perfect zest

This is a super fancy micro-plane; it shreds cheese, grates chocolate and also creates the perfect lemon zest. But you’ll want to kill yourself when you try and clean it, so think twice before you buy one. I have a love/hate relationship with mine.
 I recommend making this in a jar, that way you can just shake it to emulsify the ingredients instead of worrying about whisking and all that business.
Since you are using all fresh ingredients, it is best to make this dressing each time you want to use it, but it will keep in the refrigerator for about 2 weeks, just remember to shake it up each time.  Which actually reminds e of a funny story; one of my first jobs was at a grocery store and we used to tell the new people that one of their jobs was to shake the salad dressings, not the creamy ones but the oil/vinegar ones. They would stand there for like an hour shaking before they realized we were laughing at them. Ok, maybe you had to be there, but trust me it was funny.


Tea Party Salad Dressing

Please, please, please find a store near you that sells “Herb Salad” mix. It will change your life, it is a mix of dill, parsley and lots of delicious little baby greens it is a must for Tea Party Salad.  With this dressing and the herb salad mix I like to slice apples really thin, pink ladies are sweet and crisp and work really well with the tartness of the dressing.
I have also made this with lime instead of lemon and lavender and basil instead of thyme, it’s equally as impressive. Or you can add a tiny bit of cream and melted Parmesan if you want it a little richer.
I used this as a base dressing and added Parmesan cheese and pulverized sun dried tomatoes in an attempt to mimic Tender Greens Grilled Veggie Salad.  It was really, really good.
** Sabrina this is the dressing you have been asking about **
So this year will be the third annual Moussa girls Holiday Tea and the First San Francisco Edition. Comment below if you would like an invitation.
Please keep in mind the Ornament Exchange can get vicious.
*This is a cross between garlic and onion, not to be confused with scallion which is a green onion.

3 comments:

  1. Sounds like perfection! Can't wait to give it a go; and yes, I would like an invitation... ;) xxoo

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  2. Your Mom hasn't given up giving Tea Parties...they are just "on hold" for a couple of years. I will return!

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  3. I can't believe that it took me so long to try it, but today is the day!.. Just came back from the Farmer's Market with all fresh ingredients... Humm... can't wait to try it!... ;-) Thanks, Rhiana (Sabrina)

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