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Thursday, June 24, 2004

Peach Walnut Vinaigrette Recipe

When I was in high school I used to come into San Francisco's North Beach to hang out in cafes and drink Italian sodas and fancy coffee drinks. Torani syrups were a fixture in those cafes and they still are.

But flavored syrups can actually be used for a lot more than just funky coffee drinks and sodas. You can make all kinds of fancy cocktails with them, both alcoholic and non-alcoholic. In addition to sparkling water you can add them to anything from champagne to lemonade to iced tea. You can also use them for things like marinades, vinaigrettes and sauces.

Long ago I learned a fruit salad recipe from Jacques Pepin (from his TV show, I didn't actually mean in person) Simple enough, you just whisk together chopped mint, orange marmalade and fresh lemon juice and serve over sliced fresh fruit. For the summer, you could also make a very light marinade to macerate the fruit substituting some of the fruity flavors of syrup for the marmalade.

The flavored syrups I'm playing around with right now are the more exotic ones like mango, peach and pomegranate. The Torani web site peaked my interest in creating some recipes using the syrups. Because I like fruit and nut combinations, the first recipe I have created is a Peach Walnut Vinaigrette. I think it would be great on a spinach salad with some sliced peaches, toasted walnuts and crumbled goat cheese.

Peach Walnut Vinaigrette


3 Tablespoons peach syrup
1 Tablespoon walnut oil
2 teaspoons balsamic vinegar
3 teaspoons dijon mustard
2 large pinches kosher salt


Whisk to combine. Serve on a spinach salad or butter lettuce salad.