I love eating giant salads almost daily and I am a firm believer that the dressing I use plays a very important role in how much I enjoy my salad. Almost every dressing on the store shelves contains some sort of processed hydrogenated seed oil: soybean oil, cottonseed oil, canola oil (rapeseed oil), and the list goes on and on…Holy omega-6 Batman! We do not even touch those horrible rancid oils in our house. Olive oil has its place, but I am getting sick of it on my salad. I love bacon, when you cook bacon you end up with bacon flavored oil (melted fat). Hmmmm, that would make a great oil for my salad. *Poof*! Balsamic bacon vinaigrette was born.
- 1 package apple smoked bacon
- 1.5 cups balsamic vinegar
Chop up the bacon and cook it over medium heat until crispy and slightly sticking to the pan (the stuck on bits add flavor and texture to the dressing). Take the bacon out of the pan and set aside, assuring that you leave the grease behind in the pan. Allow the grease to cool a bit (otherwise it will splatter when you add the vinegar, see picture below), then add the balsamic vinegar to the pan and deglaze the pan. Stir until all of the bits have come off the bottom of the pan. Carefully pour into your favorite dressing bottle and enjoy! Sometimes I add some rosemary, garlic, or even a little cayenne to spice it up a little. Everything is better bathed in bacon grease!
Plan to use this dressing soon after making it (within the hour), because the bacon fat solidifies as it cools. If you plan to use it later, simply warm it up by placing the dressing bottle in a warm water bath. Voila!