Friday, January 28, 2011

Simple deconstructed dressing...

Salads are one of my favourite ways of getting nutritious and healthy greens into my diet.

A salad can be made with a very few simple ingredients that you have on hand or be chock full of assorted tasty treats.

I think homemade dressings are the best because they are the freshest alternative and contain no preservatives. They are cheaper and can be mixed in a jiffy using a need for fancy gizmos here, just keep it simple.

You'll need a jar, some good quality oil, vinegar, salt and pepper for a basic dressing.
I like to add garlic, and dijon mustard...
you can add whatever herbs or flavours that appeal to you.

A friend of mine likes to add a couple of spoonfuls of whatever jam she has on hand.

Jamie Oliver...superior cook and visionary who has trained youth at risk by teaching them cooking skills and employing them in his restaurants. He also was the instigator responsible for redesigning the meals served in the UK schools with a new focus on healthy food choices. He trained hundreds of school dinner ladies by introducing them to a variety of healthy vegetables and lower fat alternatives to chips and chicken.

He has a new show on that follows him as he cooks his way across the USA. I watched the Los Angeles episode recently and was very impressed. He has a strong sense of humanity and empathy and feels that cooking can break through ethnic, political, and racial barriers.

It was a very powerful show...thank you Jamie!

I'm thinking that most of us believe that all families should be able to sit down and enjoy eating a meal together in peace...don't you agree?

Now, let's move on as I have slightly gone off on a tangent!

Here's what Jamie Oliver has to say about salad dressing...

Simple Salad

Hostess Style...

Washed romaine lettuce spun dry in a spinner or gently pressed between a clean tea towel.
Tear into bite size does not need a knife when eating this type of salad.
Cheese wafers homemade or store bought
I love this brand, made in small batches...a bit dear, but extremely tasty.
(these can be crumbled or left whole to pick up and nosh like a cracker)

dress with homemade vinaigrette...

1 large clove of garlic minced
1tsp. dijon mustard
freshly ground salt and pepper to taste
1 tbsp. vinegar
3 tbsp. olive oil

make and shake just before serving

If you feel that you need some help in the imagination department
here is a great book of salads where the guesswork has been done for you.

I received this wonderful book from my BFF 
she is a fabulous cook...and a dear dear friend.

So now... 
your job is to action some salad and dress it as you see fit!

My social calendar is chock full this weekend
hope you have a lovely one.


  1. 10 years late I found my love for Jamie Oliver. In 2000/2001 all our co-workers and friends invited us to Jamie-recipe-dinners but I stayed somehow immune. Until this winter. As a result (1 jamie magazine and 1 cookbook) I have already cooked with red cabbage, green cabbage, deer, crispy oven potatoes and I even baked a quite spontaneous bûche de noel!
    He is my friend now. I mean, in sense of a one-way-friendship :-)
    You are right, he has a strong sense of humanity and empathy. Isn't it interesting, there is only one Jamie. Lucky us.
    PS: I want "kitchen table bakers" in Austria, now!

  2. Love Jamie Oliver, he seems so decent and down to earth. I love how he's using his talent.

  3. hi leslie,

    i love jamie too, who doesn't? and i love salads and eat them on average twice a day. big ones!

    have a lovely weekend and i'm meeting larry in las vegas so i plan to also (promise to take pics)


  4. I started making my own dressing about a year ago and now the only one I'll buy is Roquefort/Blue Cheese is I'm making a wedge salad. Think about all the money we save by not buying bottled, plus we're not ingesting all those nasty fillers, preservatives and chemicals.

    Thank you for giving us a few ideas to change the basic recipe up a bit...I love the tartness of apricot jam and will add a bit of that for my next batch.

    Have a fun weekend...can't wait to hear all about it next week!


  5. What a great add a bit of jam to salad dressing, I never thought of doing that. How fun and yummy too!

  6. Salads are one of my mainstay foods.

    I make a version of that dressing with minced shallots and dijon vinegar. It's also dynamite on steamed veggies.

  7. hostess

    I love salaads too. Eat them for lunch at work most days.

    I must try your dressing recipe. I usually go without and have a can of flavoured tuna for flavour and protein.

    Have a great weekend!

    SSG xxx

    Sydney Shop Girl blog

  8. I could live on salads only ( veggie salads ). Your post is a good reminder! Salads, cheese and wholegrain bread.

  9. I love Jamie Oliver...I always used to watch him on The Naked Chef...I love to make my own dressing and especially love to add a little jam when putting fruit in the sald...fresh strawberries in salad with goat cheese and walnuts are a favorite here. Also...for a treat...add jam to orange juice to make a little sauce...grill a fresh peach...a little vanilla ice cream and a wonderful dessert too!

  10. I'm watching Jamie's Ministry of Food as I type! I love a busy social calender x

  11. Hostess, I just received Living the Savvy Life. Thank you so very much. Thanks for the great blog, this is my first giveaway win, and I am thrilled.

  12. Hello Leslie,
    I've been AWOL for ages, travelling, no internet, MANShingles while travelling, 50 hour trip home, Jetlag - but worst of all 6 WEEKS WITHOUT SALAD.
    I totally agree with you about SALAD!
    Now we have two cyclones bearing down on us in Townsville - I'm worried about the salad supplies.

    I've missed reading your and Janet's blogs, over the past 6 weeks and am looking forward to a Sunday morning catching up with all the posts I've missed.
    Your blog makes me feel happy, content, and that all is right with the world.

  13. Paula- You sound very passionate about Jamie...he must have that effect on many women!

    Tabitha- It's nice to see he's not so struck on himself with all this fame.

    the gardener's cottage- Have fun Janet...I hope they do great salads in Vegas!

    Deja Pseu- I must try that too.

    SSG- Protein gives salad staying power as a meal...I agree.

    La Vie Quotidienne- Do you make your own jam?

    Adrienne- Apricot jam is my favourite too!

  14. metscan- I love cheese too...

    Linda- Your dessert sounds brilliant!

    Faux Fuchsia- He's pretty relaxed and natural in front of the's easy to get hooked!

    Julianne- Happy reading!

    fromnorthqld- Take care and batten down the hatches ...hope all will be secure and safe...

  15. Olive oil, vinegar, S&P, dijon, garlic...that's all you need for an amazingly well dressed salad. When I worked at Williams Sonoma for a holiday season they told me about a vinegar that was everyone's favorite. It's Olivier Balsamic good!

  16. annie- I too love balsamic vinegar...the brand I buy is aged 14 years but not too pricey...I would truly need a second job if Williams Sonoma opened up here!

  17. Tonight I did it again: I simply cooked, vegetables, grilling and sauting them. The way I have never done before. My mum was taught to cook in a quite "strict" way, I probably love all the "that's ok"'s in Jamie's "method".

  18. Paula- I bet they tasted marvelous...I like mine with a drizzle of balsamic vinegar too.