- fresh leaf lettuce, cut into bite sized pieces
- plain or mixed carrots, cut on the bias
- endive, chopped fine
- fresh dill, chopped
- balsamic vinegar
- olive oil
- croutons (I used Texas Toast garlic and herb)
Combine lettuce, endive, carrots and dill. If you cannot find mixed carrots, or don't feel like paying more for them, plain works just fine. In a separate bowl whisk together equal parts vinegar and olive oil. Add sugar to taste and continue to blend. Serve salad in bowls and drizzle dressing on top.
The dish: This is the method for a basic vinaigrette. I used balsamic, but you could use sherry or champagne or any other wacky vinegar you have on hand. Where to find such succulent sounding condiments? On close out, of course. Stores like Marshall's or TJ Maxx or Home Goods are great for finding cheap and unique provisions. I've found the ones I've mentioned as well as lemon infused olive oil, orange infused olive oil, white truffle oil, raspberry champagne vinegar, Cabernet vinegar and many others. These are bottles that originally were much more than any of us would spend, but now you can have them for around $7 or less. Good vinegars can be cooked or used raw, but good oils should be reserved for when there's very little or no cooking involved. Go ahead and get the cheapest stuff you can find to saute with, but if you're going to use it as a dip or dressing splurge and pull out the good stuff.