I hope you all had a wonderful Thanksgiving—welcome to December! This weekend kicks off a super busy month for me, with my girlfriends are visiting Saturday night for an early holiday get-together. I am trying out a few new recipes, so there will be plenty of ideas to follow in the coming weeks, as well as holiday menus.
I wanted to start with this simple broccolini salad, which upon first glace may look unassuming. But look closer and you will see hot pink! That is the amazing color of the cranberry vinaigrette. I am thinking it would make a terrific holiday hostess gift. Perhaps in a pretty bottle, with recipe ideas attached? I know will be enjoying it many times in the winter months to come. For salad variations, I may leave out the gnocchi for a lighter fare or switch up the cheese (feta, would be nice). However, I find the almond flavor and crunch to be essential, so won’t be touching that!
Broccolini Salad with Cranberry Vinaigrette
serves 4 as a side dish
1/2 c fresh cranberries
2 T red wine vinegar
1/4 c olive oil
2 T water
1 T Dijon mustard
1 garlic clove, peeled
1/2 t salt
1/4 t black pepper
1bunch broccolini, long stems trimmed
2 c cooked gnocchi
1 c thinly sliced fresh spinach
1/2 c crumbled ricotta salata
1 c toasted, sliced almonds
In a blender, combine all dressing ingredients. Puree until smooth, and set aside.
Bring a medium pot of water to a boil. Add broccolini, and cook 3-4 minutes, until just tender. Transfer to a colander and rinse with cold water to stop cooking. Shake well, to remove all water, and transfer to a bowl. Add gnocchi, spinach, ricotta salata and almonds. Toss to combine and divide among serving plates. Top with cranberry vinaigrette and salt and pepper, to taste.