Chef's Corner

Food Musings: Vinaigrette for Summer Salads

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With the warm weather upon us fresh vibrant salads are an excellent addition to most meals.  Local romaine, red and green leaf, arugula, radicchio, frisee, and Bibb lettuce are readily available in many markets.  One big question is what to dress the salad with. There are a few easy and quick solutions.  One option is to add a good quality extra virgin olive oil, vinegar and or fresh citrus juice directly to the greens and mix gently, season with salt and black pepper.  The other is to make a dressing separately starting in a bowl with 1 part acid or vinegar, then slowly whisking in 2 parts olive oil.  The dressing can be enhanced with chopped shallot/garlic, Dijon mustard, chopped herbs, etc…

Vinaigrette                            

White Balsamic Vinegar                                 ¼  cup             

Lemon juice, fresh                                          2 Tbl.  

Shallots, minced                                             1 Tbl.                          

Dijon mustard                                                 1 ½  tsp.                      

Thyme, chopped                                             1 tsp.

Salt, Kosher                                                    1 tsp.              

Black Pepper, fresh ground                            ½ tsp.

Extra virgin olive oil                                        2/3 cup                       

Kosher salt                                                     as needed

Black Pepper, fresh ground                           as needed

Method

  1. Place the vinegar, lemon juice, shallots and Dijon in a stainless steel mixing bowl and whisk well to combine.
  2. Slowly drizzle in the oil while whisking constantly.
  3. Season with salt and pepper taste and adjust the amount of oil and seasoning to taste.

Chef’s Tip – roll up a kitchen towel and tie in a loose ring, set the bowl into the ring which will stabilize the bowl while you are whisking. 

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