Not content to produce “just another” balsamic vinaigrette salad dressing, the Marzetti Company has attempted to improve on one of the most popular salad dressings ever – and succeeded. Marzetti’s takes on balsamic vinaigrette goes one step beyond those commonly found on grocery store shelves.
Most balsamic vinaigrettes are primarily balsamic vinegar and oil plus some spices; on store shelves you can plainly see the separation of the oil and vinegar. In order to serve these salad dressings, they need to be shaken well. The problem comes when they sit on your salad – the oil and vinegar tend to separate again, leaving shiny spots – and tastes – of oil on your salad.
The first thing noticeable about Marzetti Balsamic Vinaigrette is that the oil, balsamic vinegar, red wine vinegar, and spices are blended together evenly, with no separation of oil and vinegar. The result is a creamy salad dressing with a distinct balsamic flavor. The dressing is so infused with flavor – yet not overwhelmingly so – that you don’t need much to get its essence evenly distributed on your salad.
The creamy texture of Marzetti’s Balsamic Vinaigrette lends itself well to marinades, glazes, and sauces as well as salads. With a touch of lemon, the dressing doubles as a great marinade for lemon chicken. Because Marzetti’s Balsamic Vinaigrette is both tart and sweet, it can even be served as a drizzle on desserts featuring fresh fruit.
Following is a recipe I created for chicken marinated in Marzetti Balsamic Vinaigrette with a raspberry walnut glaze, served over either fresh spinach greens as a salad or over rice as an entree.
Sandra’s Raspberry Walnut Balsamic Chicken
Amounts are per chicken breast:
2-3 T. Marzetti Balsamic Vinaigrette (for marinade)
2 T. Marzetti Balsamic Vinaigrette (for glaze)
6 tsp. seedless raspberry preserves
¼ cup fresh raspberries
3 T. heavy cream
2 T. butter
1 T. chopped walnuts
Gorgonzola cheese (optional)
Fresh spinach leaves or cooked rice
Wash chicken in cold water. Place chicken breasts and Marzetti Balsamic Vinaigrette in a zip-loc bag. Shake until coated. Marinate in refrigerator 2 hours to overnight.
After the chicken is finished marinating, heat skillet and put butter in to melt. Put marinated chicken in skillet and lightly brown (app. 3 min. each side). Set aside.
In a small pan heat Marzetti Balsamic Vinaigrette and raspberry preserves. In a fine strainer, mash fresh raspberries, straining juice into a small bowl (leave behind seeds). Add juice to skillet. Bring to a simmer & reduce to consistency of a thick sauce. Slowly add cream and bring to a simmer, stirring constantly. Reduce to consistency of a glaze. Add finely chopped walnuts.
Return chicken breasts to skillet and continue to cook, occasionally spooning sauce over chicken. Cook chicken on both sides until brown & cooked through.
For a salad, slice chicken and arrange on a bed of fresh spinach leaves. Drizzle glaze over salad. Crumble Gorgonzola cheese (optional) on top and serve.
For an entree, place chicken on a bed of rice. Drizzle glaze over both. Crumble Gorgonzola cheese (optional) on top and serve.