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08.08.2005

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dressing up how to make a salad dressing
by Yee-Fan Sun
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continued from page 2

The oil and vinegar will eventually separate out from each other if left to sit; should this happen before mealtime, make sure to give it a good whisk before serving. Even easier, pop the dressing into a small jar with a good screw top, and you can just shake it up to remix. For a more stable emulsified dressing, you might also try using a food processor, blender, or hand blender (for small quantities like above, I like my mini food-processor). Add the vinegar, salt and pepper to the processor, blender, or bowl. With the motor running, drizzle in the oil until you have a nice emulsified vinaigrette.

simple ways to jazz up your vinaigrette
Once you figure out how to make a good basic vinaigrette, you might want to start getting more experimental. Try one of these additions (or even a combination of them)

Mustardy dressing | Add a tsp. of Dijon mustard.
Garlicky dressing | Take a smallish clove of garlic, and mince it up as finely as possible. Whisk into the dressing.
Herbed dressing | Add a 1/2 tsp. minced fresh herb of your choice -- tarragon, dill, chives, oregano and marjoram are all good.
Honeyed dressing | Add a tsp. of honey. The sweetness adds a nice balance to the finished dressing; you can also use sugar or brown sugar, but I like the extra flavor honey imparts.
Creamy dressing | Cut the olive oil in half and add 2-3 Tbsps. (depending upon how creamy you want the dressing) of yogurt (full-fat tastes best; Greek yogurt is particularly nice) or sour cream (ditto on the fat thing)
Citrus dressing | Substitute half or all of the vinegar with fresh squeezed lemon or lime juice.

o o o

So get out that oil and vinegar and start playing around. Once you've crafted your perfect homemade house dressing, you'll never settle for the bottled stuff again.

get the printer-friendly dressing recipe


check out these related articles: 
soup up your salad | salad days: make a super salad

or check out the recipe index!

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