Saturday, January 2, 2010

Delicious DIY salad dressings

courtesy of Mark Sisson
Probably one of the easiest meals to prepare is a huge salad. Especially if you do some prep work at the beginning of the week by chopping up all kinds of vegetables and protein sources (hard boiled eggs, cooked chicken or turkey) and keeping them in ziplocs or containers. This way, all you have to do is dump a bunch of greens in a bowl/container and top with desired veggies/protein of your choice. This could be easy lunches for the entire week.
Following are some ideas for different salad dressings that take little effort and will make better choices than store bought dressings which often contain undesirable ingredients.

Raspberry Vinaigrette
While we’d usually pass on honey, this salad dressing was too darn tasty and refreshing to forgo – especially when paired with a salad of mixed baby greens, feta cheese and toasted walnuts. If you’d prefer, steer clear of honey altogether.

1/2 cup raspberry vinegar
1 tbsp of raw honey
1 tbsp fresh mint leaves, finely chopped

Pour vinegar in a mason jar or other container with a tight lid. Add honey and chopped mint, cover with lid and shake. If still too bitter, add in a bit more honey.

Citrus Vinaigrette
1 tbsp white balsamic vinegar
1 tbsp fresh squeezed orange juice
1 tbsp fresh squeezed grapefruit juice
1 tbsp fresh lime juice
1 tbsp fresh lemon juice
6 tbsp olive oil
2 tbsp chopped walnuts
2 tbsp grated Romano or Parmesan cheese
Salt and pepper to taste

Again, in a large mason jar or container with a tight lid, combine the vinegar, orange juice, grapefruit juice, lime juice, and lemon juice. Drizzle in the olive oil while whisking vigorously. Once mixed, add the walnuts and cheese and stir. Season with salt and pepper to taste

Balsamic Vinaigrette
Although this makes a great, simple salad dressing, it is equally delicious as a marinade for meat or when drizzled on steamed vegetables.

3/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
3/4 cup balsamic vinegar
1 clove garlic, crushed
1/2 tsp dried oregano
2 tsp Dijon mustard
Salt and pepper to taste

In a mason jar or other container with a tight lid, combine all the ingredients. Shake until all ingredients are combined. Refrigerate until ready to serve.

Basil Vinaigrette

Delicious year round, this salad is especially tasty when paired with an Italian-themed salad laden with fresh mozzarella and ripe tomatoes.

1 cup olive oil
1/2 cup apple cider vinegar
3 tbsp chopped fresh basil (it’s very important here to use fresh – it’s not nearly as good with dried leaves!)
2 cloves garlic, minced

In a bowl, whisk together the olive oil, apple cider vinegar, basil, and garlic. Refrigerate until ready to serve.

Parsley Dressing
3 tsp olive oil
2 tsp lemon juice
1/4 tsp onion powder
2 tsp chopped parsley

In a bowl, combine the olive oil, lemon juice and onion powder. Once combined, add in the chopped parsley, mix thoroughly with a whisk and serve.

Lemon Caesar Dressing
1 tsp lemon peel (finely grated)
3 tbsp lemon juice
1 tsp Dijon mustard
1 tsp anchovy paste
1 tsp Worcestershire sauce
2 cloves garlic, minced
1/2 cup olive oil
1 tbsp sour cream
Salt and pepper to taste

In a bowl, whisk all ingredients except oil and sour cream. Once combined, slowly add oil, whisking constantly until smooth (if you stop, the dressing could break). Once combined, whisk in sour cream until smooth and creamy. Refrigerate until ready to serve.

Asian Dressing
Add a taste of the orient (without the sugar) with this tangy Asian-inspired dressing.

1/2 cup orange juice (about 2 large oranges)
1/3 cup white vinegar
2 tbsp sesame seeds
1 tbsp Asian mustard (should be easily found in the ethnic food aisle of your local grocery store)
1/4 tsp kosher salt
1 medium garlic cloves, minced
3 tbsp sesame oil

In a bowl, whisk together orange juice, vinegar, sesame seeds, mustard, sugar, salt, and garlic. Once combined, slowly whisk in sesame oil.

Ginger-Asian Dressing
A second spin on the Asian dressing theme, this dressing is delicious on salads as well as steamed or grilled veggies.

1 carrot, fresh, small, peeled and shredded
2 tbsp white wine vinegar
2 tbsp cider vinegar
1 tbsp low sodium soy sauce
1/2 tsp sesame oil
2 tbsp minced onion
1 tbsp hot mustard
1 tbsp fresh ginger root, grated

Combine all ingredients in a blender or food processor. Blend until smooth.

French Style Dressing
1/2 tsp dry mustard
1/4 tsp white pepper, ground
1 tsp unsalted tomato paste
7 tbsp olive oil
1/3 cup red or white wine vinegar
2 tsp water
1/2 tsp fresh chopped onion

In a large mason jar or other container with a tight lid, combine all ingredients, shake it up and serve.

No comments:

Post a Comment