As it happens, basil is an exceptionally hardy herb, perfect for urban horticulturalists. Even precariously placed on my third floor kitchen window ledge, with entirely too much sun and neglect, basil thrives every year.
‘Well, we’ve got a bumper crop of basil.’ In the early eighties, our neighbor, Donna, made that proclamation before introducing my parents to the wonders of pesto.
As it happens, basil is an exceptionally hardy herb, perfect for urban horticulturalists. Even precariously placed on my third floor kitchen window ledge, with entirely too much sun and neglect, basil thrives every year. Cilantro wilts, and thyme shrivels into a carcass but basil is a champ season after season.
After a recent trip out of town, I found upon my return that my basil had exploded from just a few leaves to a genuine bush. This Creamy Basil Vinaigrette is packed with a full cup of fresh basil. If you have any other herbs surviving in your yard (or fire escape), feel free to throw them into the mix also.
A bit of tarragon or parsley would make a fine addition here. This dressing is wonderful over a salad, naturally, but consider using it as a dip, or drizzled over some grilled salmon.
Creamy Basil Vinaigrette
1 cup lightly packed basil leaves
2 cloves garlic, peeled
2 tablespoons of capers, drained
1 tablespoon chopped chives
1 1/2 teaspoons honey
1 5.3-ounce container nonfat Greek yogurt
2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
2 tablespoons Dijon mustard
3 tablespoons fruity olive oil
salt & pepper, to taste
- You may use a full sized blender for this job, but an immersion blender in a container with tall sides works just as well. Place the basil, garlic, capers, chives, honey, yogurt, apple cider vinegar, and Dijon mustard in the blender.
- Turn on the blender or immersion blender, and allow it to process the food until it is very well mixed.
- With the blender still running, add the olive oil in a steady stream.
- Turn off the blender and check the seasonings. Add salt and pepper as needed.
- Place the creamy basil vinaigrette in a smaller container and place in the refrigerator. If possible, allow the flavors to chill and come together for at least an hour before serving.
This recipe will yield about twelve ounces of salad dressing.