Thursday, April 1, 2010

What's-in-the-Fridge Salad Dressing

This post is dedicated to that elusive salad dressing that I prepared for both February and March Dinner Almost Impossible. It was green, thick, and full of flavours. Even my pickier friends liked it. I created this dish by accident during February's DAI. I had bunch of leftover herbs and vegetable from other dishes and I decided to make a salad with mustard vinegarette out of it. It was rather unscientific and chaotic. I had no idea what made it good (and most importantly, what made it so thick!). It took me 1 month trying to replicate the dish again, just in time for the March DAI. The sauce was perfect, but I forgot to salt the salad. Doh!

The dressing is egg-free, dairy-free, sugar-free, gluten-free, and almost no calories. Yet it is full of strong flavours. On top of that, many of the ingredients is actually good for health! I just put whatever herbs I have in the fridge into the sauce which can go over whatever vegetable you like in a salad. You can make a lot of it and keep it in the fridge for a week. All you need is a blender.

Ingredients: This is what I had in my fridge. A lot of these herbs are optional.
½ bulb of garlic (if you are not a garlic addict like me, a clove will do just fine)
1 small shallot
⅓ fresh parsley
1 sprig of tarragon
5 fresh basil leaves
2 sprigs of thyme without stem
1 sprigs of rosemary
3-4 sprigs of chives
3 Tbsp red wine vinegar (white wine vinegar is fine)
1 Tbsp mustard (whatever type you have)
1 Tbsp Agave or Honey or Maple Syrup
1 Cup of safflower oil (or grape seed oil or Italian Olive Oil)

Instruction: If your blender is temperamental like mine, you might want to minced and chopped up the ingredients.
1. In a blender, pureé garlic and shallot
2. Scrape down the sides, pureé all the herbs. If it is too dry, add 1 Tbsp water
3. Scrape down the sides again, add in vinegar, mustard, agave, and pureé some more.
4. Set your blender on the lowest level and very slowly pour in the safflower oil.
5. You can either add the salt and pepper into the blender now or just add it to your salad later.

Done! So easy.

For salad, I had cucumber, lettuce, onion, and kohlrabi, Febuary's DAI ingredient.

For wine pairing, a young, light bodied unoaked white, such as a German Riesling, would be perfect.

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