I have this theory about salads. Actually, it is my mom's theory, but I long ago adopted it as my own. It goes like this: A salad always tastes better when made by someone else. (A corollary theory is that sandwiches also taste better made by someone else, but that is another post.) No matter how hard I try, my salads are just ho-hum. There is one great exception to this rule, however. And it includes a salad made with the below-described salad dressing.
For a couple of years I was obsessed with making one type of salad. Sure, I made and ate lots of others (especially when made by someone else!), but this was my go-to salad. I never tired of it. Until, well, maybe day 753 hit and then I stopped making it. I finally hit the wall. However, just the other day I pulled out the recipe for the salad dressing (which is the critical component of the salad) and whipped up a batch. We've been eating salads with it ever since.
The salad I make with this includes the following: red leaf lettuce, green leaf lettuce, arugula, thinly sliced carrots, green onions, avocado and homemade croutons. But it tastes good on just about everything.
from Gourmet Everyday Cookbook
1/2 c. red-wine vinegar
1/2 c. freshly grated parmigiano reggiano
1/3 c. water
1 1/2 T Dijon mustard
1 1/2 t. sugar
1 1/2 t. salt
1 large garlic clove
1 1/2 c. extra virgin olive oil
1/3 c. fresh Italian (flat leaf) parsley
Puree vinegar, cheese, water, mustard, sugar, salt and garlic in a blender. Drizzle in olive oil while blender is running. Add parsley and puree until finely chopped.
Makes about 2 1/2 cups (enough for a week's worth of salads!) and keep for 1-2 weeks in the refrigerator.
p.s. I still love that other salad dressing, but it is not something I want every single day. This dressing, however, I do want everyday.