People who are not familiar with vegetarian or vegan eating often assume that we eat nothing but salad all day. Or that we would be full if we ate just salad when eating out. Now, I do love a good salad, but I’m not Heidi Klum. Often, I do have salad for dinner, but there is always a non-spectular side dish involved. Maybe a simple baked potato with quark (garnished with roasted onions and herbs), or a nice fresh loaf of bread with a slice of cheese or perhaps some scrambled tofu and a side of rice.
I must confess, that for a vegetarian, I am not very creative with salads. For a long time I used to eat just one type of dressing consisting of a small yoghurt and a package of pre-made dressing powder. I ate this, because I had no clue how to make a proper dressing. I would try every once in a while and again and again, but I was never happy with the result. My salads would always consist of the following ingredients: green salad leaves (depending on what I could get at the supermarket), shredded carrots, tomatoes cut into quarters, a couple of tablespoons of corn and half a cucumber. It was actually my husband who taught me how to make salad dressings. His advice that I keep in mind until this day when making a dressing: you have to season it while imagine your entire salad. I have also grown adventurous when making salad dressings, and I have quite a few that I can whip up in a matter of minutes.
My latest obsession has been Roasted Garlic & Onion Vinaigrette. It’s lush, deep in flavor, somewhat sweet and quite creamy. It does take a bit of time to prepare it, but most of it is hands-off. My husband also enjoys this dressing a lot, which means I’ve managed to impress the master of salad dressings in our home with this one. I could totally eat salad every day for every meal with this dressing, so I’ve been making double batches and keeping a second serving in the fridge to eat the next day.
Roasted Garlic & Onion Vinaigrette
1 small onion
1 small shallot
4 garlic cloves
1 tsp dijon mustard
1 tsp honey (or agave syrup)
2 tbsp dark balsamic vinegar
1 fig-flavored balsamic vinegar
fresh herbs (parsley, oregano, basil, etc.)
salt and pepper to taste
Peel the onion, the shallot and the garlic gloves and cut them into slices. Place into a small oven dish, sprinkle with olive oil and bake in the oven at 220 °C for about half an hour to 45 minutes or until golden brown and roasted.
Meanwhile, place the rest of the ingredients into the blender. When the onions, shallots and garlic slices are roasted, place them into the blender and blend until you obtain a smooth, frothy and thick liquid. Add more balsamic vinegar and olive oil if necessary. If you want a less thick vinaigrette, add a few drops of water.