Nora’s Dijon Balsamic Vinaigrette

Let me introduce you to Nora.

Nora is my sister (in-law) and the love of my brother’s life. She’s a German, world travelling, yoga instructing, coffee addicted, amateur magician. Oh and she’s an incredible chef. I could go on an on about how amazing she is, but to truly understand how sweet, loving, smart and hilarious she is, you need to meet her.

I only really got to know Nora when she came to visit for Christmas in 2011. Now I wasn’t expecting any gifts from her, but she insisted. I feel like I’m a pretty easy guy to gift shop for. Can it be used in the kitchen to create something awesome? Yeah, I’ll probably like it. But what Nora got me that year was one of the best, most thoughtful, personal gifts I have ever received.

You see she makes this salad dressing. A salad dressing that is sweet, but not too sweet. A dressing that goes with anything, and never ever gets old. Knowing that I am obsessed with this dressing, Nora decided to give me the gift of food intelligence. She handed me a paper, rolled up into a scroll and tightly wrapped in red ribbon. I opened it up to find the recipe to her salad dressing, with a hand written personal note.

Okay, I know. It’s a recipe. Big woop. Anyone can go to Google, or Epicurious or where ever online and find a bajillion recipes. But no, it’s not just a recipe. Besides being the best salad dressing ever, it was a thoughtful gift that I will cherish forever. There is an intangible value to a gift like this. The recipe still sits in a cabinet in my kitchen, and even though I know the recipe off by heart now, I take it out every week when I make this dressing. I’ve only had it for almost two years now, and it looks like it is twenty years old. But those frayed edges and balsamic stains are what give it character.

So here’s me raising a toast to Nora, the best sister this guy could ever ask for.

Nora’s Dijon Balsamic Vinaigrette
1 part dijon mustard
1 part honey
2 parts balsamic vinegar
2 parts olive oil
Sea salt and black pepper to taste

In Nora’s words:

Combine mustard and honey in a bowl. Pour the vinegar and beat with a fork to allow the honey-mustard-mix to dissolve. Keep beating with a fork while slowly pouring in the oil, emulsifying the dressing. Season with freshly cracked black pepper and sea salt.

Serve with your favourite mixed green and veggies. Enjoy. And thanks Nora.

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