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salads, veggies and sides

Grilled Veggie Salad with Tomato Vinaigrette

No barbecue (at our house at least) is complete without a leafy green salad. This one makes use of the grill with grilled onions and peppers, and some goodies on top for interesting flavor and texture. Next time I’m thinking to grill the tomatoes for the vinagrette too!

I started putting tomatoes in my salad dressing when I was pregnant with my son. I was trying to eat tons of fruits and veggies for all those smart, healthy baby-developing vitamins and minerals (including green smoothie in the morning, oatmeal with banana midmorning, salad with lunch, carrot sticks and hummus in the afternoon….I ate a lot and pretty much constantly, haha), and adding tomato was a fun way to add a little bit more – I’d dice up a roma in the morning and let it marinate in the vinaigrette until lunchtime, yum. For this simple vinaigrette I just obliterated everything in the blender, so you get some tomatoeyness with each bite.

Grilled Veggie Salad with Tomato Vinaigrette

For the vinagrette

  • 1/2 medium-size tomato or whole small one
  • 1/4 cup white balsamic vineger
  • 1 teaspoon honey or maple syrup
  • few leaves basil, or a pinch dried basil
  • salt & pepper to taste
  • 1/2 cup olive oil

Combine tomato, white balsamic vinegar, honey, salt and pepper in the blender. Add olive oil in a stream while blending.

For the salad

  • 1 red onion, cut into large chunks and put on skewers
    couple handfuls small sweet peppers, or two red/yellow/orange peppers, deseeded
  • olive oil, salt and pepper
  • several handfuls mixed greens
  • tomato vinaigrette (above)
  • handful large green olives, sliced
  • 2 ounces goat cheese, crumbled
  • handful toasted almonds

Prepare onion and peppers for grill by coating with a little olive oil, salt and pepper. Grill until soft and slightly charred. Cool, then cut into strips.

Toss onions, peppers, greens, and half the olives with enough vinagrette to thinly coat, then sprinkle the remaining olives, goat cheese, and almonds on top. Serve with extra vinagrette on the side.

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