As I mentioned last week, Shane and I hosted Christmas dinner for our families this year. I spent a fair amount of time obsessing over the menu, as always :) We ended up deciding on an Italian theme with a vegetarian lasagna, meatballs, and homemade rolls. I went back and forth over whether to do a veggie side or a salad, and at the last minute ended up adding this simple mixed greens salad with hoisin vinaigrette to the menu. It was a complete afterthought, especially considering how much time I'd spent choosing the other recipes. And the Asian flavors didn't exactly gel with the Italian thing we had going on, but what can I say - I love hoisin sauce!
I was pleasantly surprised when this simple vinaigrette wound up being one of the bigger hits of the meal. There were several requests for the recipe, always the surest sign of a successful dish in my book! The vinaigrette can be whipped up in no time by throwing all the ingredients in the food processor and giving them a whir - easy peasy. It has a fairly thick (though very pourable) and creamy texture, and is packed with flavor. The ginger really comes through and you get the hoisin flavor, but it's not overly sweet as hoisin sauce can sometimes be.
If you're going to be adding a few more salads to your diet in the new year, I definitely recommend giving this vinaigrette a shot. Healthy, flavorful, and so simple, it's a no-brainer!
Mixed Greens Salad with Hoisin Vinaigrette
barely adapted from Cooking Light, April 2006
2 tablespoons rice wine vinegar
1 tablespoon finely chopped peeled fresh ginger
1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
1 1/2 tablespoons hoisin sauce
2 teaspoons canola oil
1 1/2 teaspoons low-sodium soy sauce
1 teaspoon toasted sesame oil
1 large garlic clove, minced
1 cup cherry tomatoes, halved
1/2 cup thinly sliced scallions
8 oz mixed greens
To make the vinaigrette: Combine the vinegar, ginger, Dijon mustard, hoisin sauce, canola oil, soy sauce, sesame oil, and garlic in the bowl of your food processor. Process until ingredients are well combined.
Toss the tomatoes, scallions and mixed greens in a salad bowl. Drizzle with the vinaigrette, tossing to coat.