** NEED TO LINK DRESSING RECIPES ON BOTTOM OF PAGE **
Dressings should accent, not overpower the other flavors of the salad.
They should be compliments for the rest of the meal.
Always use fresh, quality ingredients
The minimum equipment to make a good dressing is a covered jar, to shake the ingredients. A more pro tool would be a blender, to mince and blend the ingredients into a smooth mixture.
Salad dressings are basically made of a type of fat like oil or mayo, an acid like vinegar or juice and seasonings.
For lower fat versions, use less oil and substitute some of the vinegar with a citrus juice for a vinaigrette. For creamy versions, use buttermilk, Greek yogurt, or sour cream to replace some or all of the mayo.
Though used primarily for salads, dressings can make great marinades for meats and seafood and also for dipping sauce for veggies and grilled meats and seafood.
Bases for dressings
- Oil – Use 3 parts oil to 1 part vinegar or citrus juice.
- Creamy – 3 parts cream or buttermilk to 1 part vinegar or citrus juice.
- Eggs – Use yolks of hard-boiled eggs, pressed thru a sieve and blended in blender.
- Bacon – Mostly for heavy lettuces and spinach. Use fat rendered form diced bacon browned in fry pan & drained off. Use HOT, immediately before serving.
- Mustard – Mixed with cream, mayo and or honey to mellow the bite.
- Mayo – For creamy dressings, add milk or water to thin out. *Mayo should be used with discretion as many people do not care for creamy dressings or find mayo too heavy for late suppers*
- Raw onions – should be used sparingly as many people don’t care for them. Chives are a milder alternative plus add some color.
Basically, you are trying to mix oil & water! Since they want to separate, stirring doesn’t really do the job. Shaking vigorously in a closed jar will work, but a blender makes easy work and gives a better product.
- Pour all liquid ingredients into the blender, except for oil.
- Add all seasonings and herbs. If using fresh herbs, garlic or onions, chop first.
- Blend on low to mix.
- With blender going, slowly drizzle oil thru the opening of the cover. This will make a smooth, well blended dressing.
- Aunt Margie’s Vinaigrette
- Blue Cheese
- Mom’s Italian
- Thousand Island