It's party time at The Café (wooo hooo!), and we're so excited. Can you tell? The celebration is for .... our little Emery Kate, who turned one year old this week. Little did we know that an ordinary day last March would bring such an extraordinary little blessing into our lives. We're having a birthday party for her on Saturday, and have invited family and friends.
We've been busy as little bees this week; cooking, cleaning and tidying up The Café. A party is such a wonderful motivation to get things in order, isn't it? And this part of the year is the perfect time to plan a festivity to welcome spring and chase away the winter doldrums. I tend to be a bit negligent about things around the house in the cold months, but the thought of Spring gets me organizing, cleaning out drawers and spiffing things up.
Our party for Emery is a brunch, as we have family that will be traveling from out of town. We'll be sharing more fun details in the days ahead (even a few really cool craft/decorating ideas), but I wanted to give you a sneak preview of the party with a delicious salad dressing we'll be serving at the this special event. I wanted something light and spring-like, so I tried a few concoctions before making the final decision on this delightful Strawberry, Grapefruit and Sweet Basil Vinaigrette.
It's sweet, tangy, fresh and bursting with bright flavor. It pairs well with so many ingredients. This dressing is delightful with baby spinach, strawberries, red onions and shredded roasted chicken breast (our dinner tonight). It would also be wonderful with ribbons of Romaine, diced mango, thinly sliced English cucumber and crumbled Gorgonzola. I'm also imagining it drizzled over grilled boneless chicken breast - delish! I could go on and on, but I think you get the picture; it's super versatile.
I've got a fun, Spring salad planned for the party, but that's a story (post) for another day. In the meantime, be sure to whip up a batch of this wonderful dressing - it won't take more than 10 minutes, and I think you'll see why we're so crazy about it. Stay tuned for more fun celebration ideas and recipes.
- ¾ cup fresh grapefruit juice from 1 fresh grapefruit
- 2 teaspoon grapefruit zest finely zested
- 2 cups sliced fresh strawberries
- 1 clove garlic finely minced
- 2 tablespoons honey
- 1 tablespoons rice vinegar
- 2 tablespoons fresh lime juice
- ½ cup canola oil
- 2 tablespoons finely chopped fresh basil
- ⅛ teaspoon sea salt
- freshly ground black pepper a generous grind
Place grapefruit juice a medium size saucepan. Bring to a boil over medium-high heat and cook, uncovered, until mixture is reduced to about ⅓ cup, about 8-10 minutes. Set aside and allow to cool for 10 minutes.
When grapefruit juice has cooled, place in blender with zest, strawberries, garlic honey, rice vinegar and lime juice. Mix until well combined then transfer to a medium size jar and add oil in a slow, thin stream whisking continuously with a small whisk or a fork. Add chopped basil, sea salt and freshly ground pepper and stir. Keeps well for several days in the refrigerator.