Saturday, December 22, 2012

Creating Vinaigrettes

Vinaigrettes are so easy to make and are all about flavor.  Building amazing flavor to add to a salad.  Bring a salad to a meal at the holidays is always a fresh choice when we are eating such rich foods.

1.  Start with finely chopped ginger, onion, capers, shallot, garlic or herbs.  Honey, Dijon mustard or soy sauce also add great flavor.  Salt and pepper are always needed too for seasoning.
2. A vinaigrette needs acid - which comes from the vinegar....add red or white wine, sherry, cider or balsamic vinegar or lemon or lime juice will also work as an acid.
3. Add oil - olive oil is what I use the most, but safflower, vegetable or peanut oil. I like to do 2 to 1 ration or 3 to 1.  1 part acid or 2 to 3 parts of oil.
4. Mix - shake in a jar,  combine in a blender or  whisk in a bowl (don't use a metal bowl as it reacts to the acid and throws the taste of it off.)   I like using a jar and then just store it in for up to 3 days in the fridge.

Combinations to try:
* Garlic, thyme, Djon mustard, red-wine vinegar and extra-virgin olive oil
* Shallot, cilantro, roasted jalapeno, lemon juice, extra-virgin olive oil
* Shallot, honey, orange zest, lemon juice, extra virgin olive oil
* Shallot, tarragon, sherry vinegar, extra virgin olive oil
* Balsamic vinegar, extra virgin olive oil
* Oregano, parsley, garlic, white wine vinegar, extra virgin olive oil
* Ginger, garlic, honey mustard, soy sauce, rice vinegar, extra virgin olive oil
* Raspberry Jam,  honey mustard, white wine or balsamic vinegar,  extra virgin olive oil

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