Friday, January 7, 2011

When the times are tough....

I hope everyone survived the holiday season!  It was a crazy mess of food and celebration for our family.  Definitely worth every minute!

But now that the celebrations are may be under a whole lotta unexpected debt.  One of the fortunate things about being unemployed is that we didn't go crazy this year.  We aren't in too deep, because we've been living on a shoestring since last March.  Its almost become a badge of honour for me, at least.  Look how little I used to make (fill in the blank)!  I've become proud of the meals and snacks I've made using the leftovers or frozen goods we stored from our garden.  I know, pride goeth before the fall...but there are times when I feel like pride is appropriate.

Each New Year I make a new resolution.  I try to build on each previous year's resolution.  I am trying to make baby steps to gently change my lifestyle.  If you try too much, all at once, you are destined to fail.

Last year I promised myself I wouldn't eat any more store bought salad dressings...of course I made this resolution after I realized how stinking easy they are to make!!!  I have been making balsamic vinigrette for over a year now.  Its an endless source of happiness for me, as I adore salads. 

Today I went to make my typical lunch time salad...only to find that I had used up my Balsamic vinegar!!!!  WHAT DO I DO NOW!?!?  Well...i turned to the white vinegar as an alternative.  White vinegar is something we have in bulk.  I only clean with vinegar, so we go through it like it was water.  (Thank goodness its cheap!)

So I freehanded this recipe and it was so lovely I thought I would share it!

This recipe is chock full of healthy things that your body it tastes fresh and yummy!

3/4 cup of Sunflower Oil
4 tbsp of white vinegar
4 tbsp lemon juice (i use concentrate...but fresh is obviously better)
1 tsp of dijon mustard
2 cloves garlice (pressed in garlice press)
1/2 tsp of ground coriander (we grew it last year in our garden, dried the seeds and keep them in a grinder)
dash of kosher or sea salt (for highest mineral content)

wisk and pour over salad greens

Now will I get more balsamic when the funds permit?  YES!  But this was a great substitute when you are living on a budget.  Dijon mustard tastes healthier than the yellow version and it lasts a long time.  Definitely a good value.  I buy the garlic locally from a guy we see every weekend at the Famrer's Market here in Verona.  Sunflower Oil is a nice light oil and very healthy for you.  You could substitute canola oil but I find that olive oil is a bit too intense for this recipe.  You could also change up the spice to your liking.  I just adore the lemony flavour of coriander...but I did consider using basil or parsley.  Whatever you like!  You can tailor this recipe based on what you grow in your garden!  Or what your taste buds like....

Experiment today!

Check back for the upcoming contest where you could win a copy of "The All-You-Can-Eat Gardening Handbook" of your very own!!!


  1. Sounds yummy Lisa... always looking for new salad dressing recipes! Thanks!

  2. P.S. - Any idiot can live well when they have lots of money... it takes real skill to live well on very little! Well done!