Nothing quite beats a traditional vinaigrette to enhance a salad that may already have very strong flavours. This classic Balsamic Vinaigrette is the perfect dressing that won’t overpower your salad.
Balsamic vinegar is to Italy like wine is to France. It is a regional product that is regulated in both Modena and Reggio Emilia in Italy and is DOP stamped.
If you have ever noticed the term DOP associated with produce in Italy, it stands for Denominazione d’Origine Protetta | Protected Designation of Origin. This label guarantees that the product is produced, processed and packaged in that particular geographical zone and is done so according to tradition.
The 2 DOP protected balsamic vinegars are Aceto Balsamico Tradizionale di Modena DOP (Traditional Balsamic Vinegar of Modena) and Aceto Balsamico Tradizionale di Reggio Emilia DOP (Traditional Balsamic Vinegar of Reggio Emilia). I have been very fortunate to have sampled an authentic balsamic vinegar from Reggio Emilia. Needless to say it was a teaspoon of velvety nectar.
Balsamic vinegar is made from grape must. Grape must is freshly crushed grape juice of not only the fruit but in its entirety to include the skin, seeds and stems. The first historical mention of balsamic vinegar dates all the way back to 1046.
As much as we would love to be able to procure a small bottle of a DOP sanctioned balsamic vinegar, it is simply not affordable for us mere mortals. The one I tried was around 2000 Euro for a small bottle. I kid you not!
No doubt you would have come across balsamic vinegar from Modena that is affordable. This is a product which uses grapes blended with wine vinegar but produced exclusively Modena. In my book, they are more than good enough!
Balsamic Vinaigrette Ingredients
Balsamic vinegar: If you’d like to splurge on a good bottle, this Traditional Balsamic Vinegar of Modena 25 years old might take your fancy. Otherwise, you can always try Colavita Aged Balsamic Vinegar of Modena as an everyday choice.
Olive oil: Add some good olive oil to the balsamic vinegar for a classic vinaigrette.
Balsamic Vinaigrette Method
This is the simplest of all dressings which works really well if you have a salad that already has a lot of strong flavours and you just want to stir through a simple dressing.
Simply mix 3 tbsp of olive oil with 1 tbsp of balsamic vinegar until well combined.
Best Salad For this Dressing
Calling all Brussels sprout lovers! Those with a sophisticated palate yearning for nutty and bitter flavours, this Purple Brussels Sprouts Salad is made for you. The fragrant spices and heavenly honey add depth to the recipe. Perfect for that special occasion!
More Salad Dressing Recipes
Salad dressings are incredibly easy to make in the comfort of your own home. This way you can control the ingredients to suit your palate and you can make the exact portion you need for that one meal. We have a huge collection of recipes and you may just like some of these:
- Tahini Miso Dressing
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Ingredient Pairing Ideas
If you’d like to create your own salad and have an ingredient you’d like to hero, we have a some great pairing suggestions to help you work out what flavours go well together.
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- 3 tbsp olive oil
- 1 tbsp balsamic vinegar
- In a small mixing bowl or mason jar,add the olive oil and balsamic vinegar.
- Mix until well combined.
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