Tag Archives: vinaigrette

Roasted Beet & Blue Cheese Salad

I love to make this salad during the fall, when beets appear at farmers markets.  Roasting the beets really brings out their sweetness, a perfect for for the rich blue cheese.  Lately, I have used domestic blue cheeses, including:  Jasper Hill (Bayley Hazen), Old Chatham (Shaker Blue & Ewe’s Blue), Great Hill, Lively Run (Cayuga Blue), and Maytag.

Ingredients:

  • 2             Beets (peeled, medium, sliced or 4-6 small beets, halved – should yield 2 cups of sliced beets)
  • 2/3 C    Walnuts (pecans, sliced almonds and pine nuts work)
  • 2 C         Romaine Lettuce
  • 2 C         Arugula
  • 1 TB       Lucini Pinot Noir Vinegar
  • 1 tsp      Mustard (dijon is preferable, but you can substitute whole grain)
  • 1/4 tsp Kosher Salt
  • 1/8 tsp Black Pepper (freshly ground)
  • 3 TB      Lucini Extra Virgin Olive Oil
  • 1             Belgian endive
  • 2             Pears
  • 1/2 C    Blue Cheese (crumbled small)

Preparation:

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F.  Lay the beets on a large sheet of aluminum foil, drizzle with the oil, toss the thyme on top, and season with salt and pepper.  Fold up the foil tightly to make a sealed pouch and put it on a sheet pan.  Bake until the beets are tender when pierced, about 45 minutes.  Spread the nuts on a sheet pan in a single layer.  Bake, shaking the pan occasionally, until the nuts are toasted and fragrant, about 6-8 minutes.  Let the nuts cool, and then coarsely chop.

Trim the stems of the arugula, then wash and dry the leaves very well.  Whisk the vinegar and mustard together in a large salad bowl.  Season with the salt and pepper.  Gradually whisk in the olive oil, starting with a few drops and then adding the rest in a steady stream, to make a well emulsified dressing.

Halve the endive lengthwise, cut out core, then thinly slice crosswise and add all the lettuces to the bowl.  Quarter and core the unpeeled pears and thinly slice; add to the salad.  Scatter the beets, cheese and nuts over the salad, and season with salt and pepper, to taste.  Toss the salad gently to evenly dress all the greens.

Spicy Chicken with Cucumber Sauce

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On the grill

This simple recipe balances the tangy heat of the Lucini chili-infused olive oil with the creamy, delicate flavor of Lucini’s award-winning cucumber vinaigrette.  The fresh mint looks great and adds a wonderful aromatic dimension to the dish.  This preparation works equally well with grilled turkey breast – just double the amounts of the other ingredients and taste for salt and paprika after the turkey breast has cooled.

Ingredients:

  • 4              Chicken Breasts (boneless, skinless)
  • 1 TB        Lucini Chili-Infused Extra Virgin Olive Oil
  • 1/2 tsp  Salt (sea salt is best)
  • 1/4 tsp  Black Pepper (fresh, ground)
  • 1/4 tsp  Smoked Paprika
  • 1/8 tsp  Turmeric (optional)
  • 3/4 C      Lucini Cucumber Vinaigrette
  • 6               Mint leaves (fresh, large, minced)
  • 1/2           Lime (cut into 4 wedges, optional)

Preparation:

Combine the chili-infused oil, salt, pepper, paprika and turmeric.  Coat the chicken with this sauce, cover and refrigerate for 1-2 hours.  In separate small bowl, combine the cucumber vinaigrette and mint, mix well and refrigerate until serving.  When ready to eat, grill or broil the chicken 6″ from heat for 4-5 minutes on each side until lightly browned and cooked through.  Serve with the cucumber/mint sauce and lime wedges (if using).

Spinach and Pomegranate Salad

This simple and colorful dish will look and taste great on your Rosh Hashanah table and matches well with these recipes for brisket and green beans.  The pomegranate, turmeric and olive oil provide a  powerful antioxidant combination.

anvil

Ingredients:

  • 1/4 C     Lucini Pinot Noir Vinegar
  • 1              Onion (sweet, small, thinly sliced)
  • 1/4 tsp  Paprika (smoked or sweet, optional)
  • 1/4 tsp  Turmeric (optional)
  • 1/2 tsp  Sea Salt (kosher salt will work in a pinch)
  • 1/2 tsp  Black Pepper (fresh, ground)
  • 1/2 C      Lucini Extra Virgin Olive Oil
  • 3 TB        Lucini Garlic Infused Extra Virgin Olive Oil
  • 8 C           fresh Spinach (baby spinach or chopped large)
  • 1 C           Walnuts (chopped coarsely)
  • 1/2 C      Pomegranate seeds
  • 2              Eggs (hard boiled, sliced, optional)

Preparation:

In a small skillet over low heat, toast the walnuts until fragrant – 5-7 minutes.  Allow the walnuts to cool.

In a medium bowl, combine the vinegar, onion, paprika, turmeric, salt and pepper.  In a slow, steady stream, whisk in the oils until emulsified. Adjust the ingredients to fit your taste.

Coat the spinach with the vinaigrette, mixing well for even distribution.  Sprinkle with the toasted nuts and pomegranate seeds, then toss again, making sure the pomegranate and nuts don’t collect at the bottom of your bowl.  Garnish with the egg slices, if using.

Salmon with Cucumber Vinaigrette

Salmon is one of my favorite fishes (especially Wild Salmon) to cook and eat.  It is very versatile – great poached, sauteed or grilled, in a cream sauce or lightly spiced with a spritz of lemon.  This preparation is incredibly simple – just 3 ingredients and 3 steps.  Jazz up Lucini’s award-winning Cucumber Vinaigrette with some fresh dill, spread it on the salmon and bake.  That’s it!!  The dish is guaranteed to impress your friends and family.  (Who says you have to divulge your secret sauce?)  For even more sophistication, add some rinsed capers to your marinade.

Not only is salmon a beautiful and flavorful fish, but it is also one of the best sources of omega3 fatty acids – conducive to brain cell development and shown to reduce the risk of cardiovascular disease, some cancers and hypertension.   It is also a great source of selenium, protein and Vitamin D.  Remember that Wild Salmon is much preferable to farmed – it tastes so much better better and has more nutritional value.

This recipe is for 2 servings, but it is easy to adjust for any number of fillets.  For example, if you want four servings, just use four fillets, one cup of the vinaigrette, 2 TB dill and 1/4 tsp of each spice.

Ingredients:

  • 2              Salmon fillets (about 6 oz. each, Arctic Char and Trout will work as well)
  • 1/2 C      Lucini Delicate Cucumber Vinaigrette
  • 1 TB        Dill (fresh, or 1 tsp dried)
  • 1/8 tsp  Turmeric (optional)
  • 1/8 tsp   Salt
  • 1/8 tsp   Black Pepper (fresh, ground)
  • 1 tsp        Lucini Extra Virgin Olive Oil

Preparation:

Wash and dry your salmon pieces.  Mix the vinaigrette with the dill, turmeric, salt and pepper.  Preheat your oven to 400 degrees.  Spread the marinade on the fish and allow it to sit at room temperature for 15 minutes.  Grease the bottom of an oven-safe dish or pan with the olive oil and bake the salmon until it is opaque – about 15 minutes.   Top with any excess vinaigrette and serve.

Fig Balsamic Vinaigrette – salad dressing, marinade, sauce & more

This simple recipe creates an adaptable vinaigrette that tastes great on salads, steamed vegetables, grains and even steak or chicken breast!

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Ingredients:

1/3 C      Lucini Fig Infused Balsamic

1 tsp       fresh Garlic, minced

1 tsp       Salt

1/4 tsp  Black pepper

1/2 tsp  Lemon Peel, grated fine

1/2 C     Lucini Basil – Infused Extra Virgin

Preparation:

In a bowl, whisk together fig balsamic, garlic, salt and black pepper.  Add garlic and lemon peel and stir.

Slowly drizzle in the olive oil (VERY slowly at first) while whisking constantly to emulsifiy.  If  you have time, refrigerate until serving; this seems to make the flavor more consistent throughout the vinaigrette.

Salmon w/ Hazelnuts & Pineapple

salmon hazelnut

Not only is salmon a beautiful and flavorful fish, but it is also one of the best sources of omega3 fatty acids – conducive to brain cell development and shown to reduce the risk of cardiovascular disease, some cancers and hypertension.  This preparation compliments the naturally full flavor of salmon with the earthy, bass notes of Lucini’s Roasted Hazelnut & Extra Virgin Vinaigrette and the slightly sharp sweet and sour of pineapple.  The bell pepper and roasted hazelnuts add visual and textural complexity.

If possible, you should use wild salmon for this dish.  Farmed salmon is lower in omega-3s and often contains PCB and other contaminants and remnants of drugs or other chemicals used in the salmon farms.

Ingredients:

  • 1 lb            Salmon fillets
  • 1/4 cup   Lucini Roasted Hazelnut & Extra Virgin Vinaigrette
  • 1/4 cup   Soy sauce
  • 1 Tb          fresh Lemon juice
  • 1/4 tsp    Turmeric
  • 1                 Bell Pepper (cut into thin strips)
  • 1/2 cup   Pineapple (large chop of fresh or organic canned without syrup)
  • 1/4 cup   Hazelnuts (roasted, chopped)
  • 2 Tb          Lucini Extra Virgin Olive Oil

Preparation:

Wash and dry salmon and place in a coverable bowl.  Emulsify the vinaigrette, soy sauce, lemon juice and turmeric.  Reserve 1/2 of this mixture and pour the other 1/2 over the fish.  Cover salmon and refrigerate for 35-45 minutes.

While the salmon marinates, roast the hazelnuts in a 450 degree oven for about 10 minutes until the skins begin to blister.  Allow nuts to cool and then chop and save.

Remove salmon from refrigerator.  Heat 1 Tb of olive oil in a non-stick pan and then add salmon to the pan skin side down.  Oil another smaller pan on the bottom and immediately place this other pan on top of the fish to keep the fish from curling during the cooking process.  Cook for 4 minutes with the skin down, then turn the salmon over and cook skin side up for two more minutes.

While you cook the fish, heat the other 1 Tb of olive oil in another pan.  When the pan is hot, add the peppers, pineapple and reserved marinade and saute for 2 minutes.

To serve, top each 1/4 lb serving of salmon with a corresponding 1/4 of hazelnuts, peppers, pineapple and sauce from your pan.

Simple Sardine & Bean Salad

Sardines, beans, turmeric and flax seeds are four tasty sources of nutrients.  I like to use fresh beans, but sometimes they can be hard to find.  This recipe packs a protein punch, and anchors a quick lunch or dinner when paired with a green salad or some dark, leafy greens.  Lucini Cherry Balsamic Vinaigrette adds a perfect, bright splash to counter the potential heaviness of the beans and fat of the fish.  And while sardines, beans and flax seeds may sound like the building blocks of a bland, “health over flavor” meal, this dish cedes no points in the taste department.

Ingredients:

  • 1      can   Olive Oil packed Sardines (drained)
  • 1      can   Organic Beans (Red or White Kidney, Black, Fava, Cannelini or Adzuki – use 1.5 C fresh, if possible)
  • 1/4 cup   Sun-dried Tomatoes (sliced crosswise)
  • 1                Scallion (green and white parts chopped)
  • 1/3 cup   Lucini Cherry Balsamic & Rosemary Vinaigrette
  • 1/4 tsp    Salt
  • 1/4 tsp    ground Paprika (preferably smoked)
  • 1/8 tsp    ground Black pepper
  • 1/2 tsp    ground Turmeric
  • 1      Tb     Flax seeds, ground (optional)
  • 1      Tb     Lucini Basil-infused Extra Virgin Olive Oil

Preparation:

Combine the first eight ingredients in a bowl and mix well.  Add more salt, pepper or paprika to taste.  Cover bowl and rest in refrigerator for at least 30 minutes.  Remove and mix in flax seeds and olive oil before serving.

This dish was inspired, in part, by Dr. Andrew Weil’s Anti-Inflammatory Food Pyramid.