I had lunch today at Barnaby’s Café in the Heights, located at 2802 White Oak Dr. One of my friends ordered the chicken burrito, and when the monster creation arrived at the table, we all just kind of stared at it and its bizarre garnish:
Talk about food porn
Hello? In the words of my friend Jannine, is that a burrito, or are you just happy to see me? I’m just going to go ahead and say what I know you must be thinking and get it over with — it’s a jalapeñis. It brought to mind the infamous banana candle, which I still can’t believe anyone would ever suggest as a healthy meal for children:
While the burrito might suggest that sex is in the air, with Valentine’s Day just around the corner, I think more people are inclined to think that love is in the air. One of the things that will definitely be on our Valentine’s Day dinner menu is Spring Mix with Strawberries and Cocoa Balsamic Vinaigrette. Chocolate and strawberries — it’s a no-brainer. I’m way beyond cutting heart shapes out of beets and red peppers, and other such cutesy stuff. This, on the other hand, is the salad that when you make it, your family will ask, “Are we having company?” I admit that blue cheese, fruit, and nuts are nothing new when it comes to salad, but the vinaigrette–nutty from hazelnut oil, with rich cocoa notes and subtle sweetness from balsamic vinegar and golden syrup–makes this salad unique and memorable. It’s a great way to say “I love you” this Valentine’s Day. Definitely better than a burrito with a jalapeñis.
|SPRING MIX WITH STRAWBERRIES AND COCOA BALSAMIC VINAIGRETTE|| |
- ◾For the Cocoa Balsamic Vinaigrette:
- ◾¼ cup red wine vinegar
- ◾¼ cup balsamic vinegar
- ◾1-1/2 tablespoons Lyle's Golden Syrup (can substitute honey)
- ◾2 tablespoons cocoa powder
- ◾½ teaspoon salt
- ◾¼ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
- ◾Pinch of ground cayenne
- ◾½ cup vegetable oil
- ◾½ cup hazelnut oil
- For the salad:
- ◾8 to 10 cups spring mix
- ◾1 cup sliced strawberries
- ◾½ cup glazed pecans*
- ◾4 ounces crumbled blue cheese
- *I like to use Fisher Glazed Pecans, but you can use any glazed nut you'd like. Toasted pecans are nice too.
- For the cocoa balsamic vinaigrette, in a medium bowl, whisk together vinegars, syrup, cocoa, salt, pepper, and cayenne. Slowly whisk in oils until smooth and emulsified. Transfer dressing to a serving container.
- Divide spring mix among 6 individual salad plates, chilled if possible, and drizzle with dressing, reserving any unused dressing for use at another time. Arrange strawberries, blue cheese, and pecans decoratively on top, and serve.
These are really, really good. Really.
<3 <3 <3 <3
Roses are red
Violets are blue
If you don’t like my salad
I’ve got a burrito for you