Everlasting Summer Courtesy of a Sublime Basil DressingPosted: September 6, 2011
Back to life, back to my reality: 4 a.m. wake-up calls. Summer was nice while it lasted. Actually for the most part it was crazy busy, but this Labor Day weekend provided a great reminder of how summer is supposed to feel. Two gorgeous days on the water were followed by a classic cookout with fabulous friends.
According to the calendar, we still have over two weeks of summer left, but the change of seasons was definitely in the air. Even the trees on the riverbank facing north were flashing the first hints of color. Then overnight, the rains came and ushered in cooler temperatures that will have us digging out fall clothes.
While many hot days undoubtedly still lie ahead, this subtle seasonal shift always takes me by surprise. Though an Avad football Fan, I am first and foremost a summer girl who finds the day after Labor Day to be as much of a letdown as the day after Christmas. Even the foods in the market are starting to change.
Fortunately, I stumbled upon a great way to preserve the flavor of summer in the form of a simple basil dressing. Part of the Three Pepper Pasta Salad recipe that I found on allrecipes.com while seeking inspiration for a dish to bring to the Labor Day cookout, I can’t believe that I haven’t before seen, heard of or tried this dressing. Once I tasted its sublime flavor, I could begin to imagine using it in all kinds of dishes when I crave light and summery.
- 2/3 cup olive oil
- 3 tablespoons white wine vinegar
- 1/4 cup or more fresh basil leaves
- 2 tablespoons grated Parmesan cheese
- 1 1/4 teaspoons salt
- 1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
and blend together in a blender or food processor. Makes about 1½ cups.
Interestingly the gorgeous green color disappeared when mixed into the pasta salad. You can ramp up the flavor and tang of the dressing as you like, but I think this subtle basic will provide just enough of a hint of summer to get me through this fall and winter. Even though the calendar will disagree, I am excited to have found a way to make summer last in my kitchen.
Photos by Avad Fan