July 24, 2010

Mmm, Balsamic

Something beautiful happens when you reduce balsamic vinegar: it becomes a syrup so decadent and heavenly that the only thing you can do is lick it off of your fingers. I attempted to do so in a dainty, seductive fashion, but unfortunately it's difficult to do that when you're so entranced by how wonderful it tastes and how much you wish you were sitting in a bucket of it. Oh, it's super simple to make, too. Here's how:

- Bring 3/4 cup balsamic vinegar to a boil in a small pot. Turn to a simmer and let it reduce for 15 minutes or until it has reduced to about 1/4 cup. Remove from the heat and set aside.

See? One ingredient and less than 20 minutes can give you moments of pure bliss. Anyway, I used said balsamic reduction to drizzle over my last minute dinner tonight.

Ratatouille salad

- 1 cup eggplant, cubed
- 1 medium summer squash, cubed
- 1 cup grape tomatoes, left whole
- 1 cup button mushrooms, halved if large and whole if small
- 1 tbsp olive oil
- 2 small garlic cloves or 1 large, minced
- 4 basil leaves, cut into chiffonade
- 1/2 tsp rosemary
- S&P, to taste

- Preheat oven to 375.
- Toss vegetables in olive oil, rosemary and S&P. Cook for 20 minutes or until vegetables are soft and golden.
- Put vegetables in a bowl and toss with garlic and basil. Serve warm or at room temperature. Drizzle with balsamic reduction. Try not to lick the remaining balsamic from the spoon, I dare you.

I had mine over quinoa and Boston lettuce leaves. Feel free to use peppers and onions in the roasting mix as well, but I wasn't in the mood for them tonight. I originally used the lettuce leaves for presentation sake, but it was a lovely temperature and texture contrast and tasted lovely with the balsamic.

The tomatoes were fantastic. The flavor intensified and they simply burst inside my mouth. Eaten with a glass (or two) of Sauvignon Blanc makes this girl very, very happy.


  1. That looks like the perfect dinner on a hot, hazy and humid night.

  2. Coincidentally it was all three of those things today, so I guess you're right on the money, mister.

  3. balsamic can make anything taste good. seriously. even beets :)

  4. Beets are so good on their own, though! But now I want to try them with balsamic.

  5. WOW!!! I 200lb loss. That is amazing Krystina. Good for you. I just found your blog and look forward to finding out tips that helped you that hopefully will help me too!

  6. Thank you and also thanks for stopping by, Sonya. :) I hope I can help you in any way.

  7. I don't think there's anything balsamic doesn't pair well with! The other day I literally cooked up a few noodles and just drizzled a vinaigrette right over the top.

  8. I was trying to think of things that balsamic wouldn't pair well with and all I could come up with is bananas, but even then I think it could work.

  9. That looks fantastic. Love balsamic reductions.