Chances are if you come over to my house to eat; I will make one of my favorite salads for you. I like to call it an Italian Flag Salad, not the most creative name for a salad I know. I made this salad to bring to my cousin Robbyn's house for the cooking show we were working on and it needed a name. I just looked at all the colors in it and there you go! Speaking of Robbyn, I just wanted to congratulate her on reaching one of her goals; she has lost over 100 pounds. I'm so proud of her, she has been working her little but off literally at two jobs and she decided she wanted to play around with writing some more recipes.
Italian Flag Salad
3 romaine lettuce hearts, washed and chopped
1/2 lb. fresh mozzarella cheese, cubed (use the fresh kind in water)
3 Roma tomatoes, seeded and thinly sliced
1 recipe Garlic and Herb Sourdough Croutons
1 recipe Balsamic Vinaigrette
Combine lettuce, tomatoes and croutons in a bowl and toss. Toss with vinaigrette prior to serving. I like to make everything the night before when I'm having company and just toss with the dressing on the spot.
3/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
1/3 cup balsamic vinegar
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. pepper
Combine olive oil, balsamic vinegar, garlic, salt and pepper in a cruet. Shake well to combine. I love using the leftover dressing on steamed veggies. Usually I look at a vinaigrette recipe as proportions, I usually go about 1/3 vinegar to 2/3's oil, but I went with a little more oil in this one so it's a little less pungent, if you want more of a vinegary flavor just use a little less oil. Nothing super secret here, just fresh ingredients making for a better end result.