Salad au Minette...
No, this is not "salad done in one minute" but "Salad au Minette" a recipe of a long and dear friend, Minette Hallquist of Tulsa, Oklahoma. Minette introduced me to this salad one evening more than two decades ago when Minette and her husband, Stone, invited me to dinner at their home. One taste of this sumptuous salad and I knew immediately I had to get a hold of this recipe!
There's no real trick to making the salad dressing, but there is a surprise ingredient.
The salad starts with fresh romaine (or a mixture of lettuces—Bibb [Boston], raddicio, and red leaf are spectacular for Salad au Minette), fresh parsley, red onion, and I like to add some baby portabella mushrooms. Wash and spin dry the lettuce(s) and parsley. Thinly slice enough red onion. Slice a sufficient number of mushrooms in one-quarter inch slices. Then, place the fresh ingredients in a large bowl or wooden salad bowl. Cover and place in the refrigerator. The salad is ready!
Now it's time to make the salad dressing.
Minette's dressing is a basic balsamic vinaigrette, but as I noted above, with a surprise ingredient that gives this salad dressing a wonderful flavor.
The basic proportions are as follows (these proportions serve two people):
And here's the surprise
ingredient: Maggi's seasoning!
Add eighteen drops of Maggi's seasoning to the olive oil, salt, pepper, and garlic. Whisk all of the ingredients together and take a whiff of the aroma! Interesting, no? Different, yes!
But, things get even better yet!
Whisk two tablespoons of good balsamic vinegar into the olive oil, salt, pepper, garlic, and Maggi seasoning. The oil emulsifies beautifully and the garlic, Maggi, and balsamic vinegar combine in a beautiful dark-brown, almost black hue. Take another whiff: the aroma is exceptional.
Let the salad dressing sit
for fifteen minutes or one-half hour for the ingredients to get really
acquainted. Then, pour the dressing into the salad ingredients, mix
together, and place into salad bowls. Top with freshly grated granna
padano or parmesan cheese.
Serve Salad au Minette with a warm baguette because mopping up the dressing from the bottom of the plate (or bowl) is a must!
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