(Pretty Darn Close to) Olive Garden’s Salad
I’ve given you some heavy stuff lately, haven’t I? Not exactly bikini season menu. I never attempt to wear a bikini, though. Modesty issues aside, I was never blessed with such a body, and I’m far too lazy and love food way too much to attempt at working for one. (I’m learning to embrace my squishiness.)
While I’m on the topic, it always bothered me that the proportion of bikinis in a store is substantially larger than either tankinis or one-piecers. This obviously doesn’t reflect the proportion of people in the population who have any business wearing bikinis.
Nothing like a rant before a recipe, eh? A-a-a-nyways . . .
I have a bunch of salads to send your way (and to de-grease my front page). Like it says, this salad is pretty darn close to the big OG’s. Food Network Magazine (which, by the way, has won me over in getting a subscription) did a great job at this copycat. They printed their version of the breadsticks, too, but those will have to wait for another day.
Almost-Famous Garden Salad (Olive Garden Copycat)
Yield: 4 servings
For the dressing:
1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
2 tablespoons white wine vinegar
3 tablespoons Miracle Whip (I know, I know, but I think it gives the dressing its distinct flavor.)
1 tablespoon lemon juice
2 tablespoons grated Parmesan cheese
1/4 teaspoon garlic salt
1/2 teaspoon dried Italian seasoning
For the salad:
1 10-ounce bag American salad blend (I used a mixture of Romaine and spring greens)
1/4 red onion, thinly sliced
4 small pickled peppers, such as pepperoncini
1 small vine-ripened tomato, quartered
2 tablespoons sliced black olives
1/2 cup large croutons
1 tablespoon grated Parmesan
Combine all the dressing ingredients and 1 to 2 tablespoons water in a blender or food processor; puree until smooth.
Place the salad blend in a large bowl and top with the remaining salad ingredients. Drizzle with the dressing.
from Food Network Magazine June/July 2009