These days, it's rare that I rely on a recipe salad dressing . I've committed to memory, I'm always ready to whip up a vinaigrette that's perfect for whatever I'm using to cook and use whatever.
Thanks to all the times I've put this super simple formula into practice, I now know exactly which ingredients to rely on. For example, if I'm feeling like an Asian-style sauce for a grain bowl with roasted veggies I know to rice rice, miso, and sesame oil, and I just know how much of each
With this chef-approved formula, you too can make an outstanding salad dressing without ever cracking a cookbook.
Every salad dressing needs a fat source 1
9659005] If you only use oil and vinegar in a salad dressing, you'll probably notice that two never fully combine. Separate into layers again, "Maxine Yeung, RD, trained pastry chef, and owner of The Wellness Whisk tells SELF.
That's because there's a third ingredient that you need to bring the oil and vinegar together, and that's called an emulsifier. "An emulsifier coats the oil molecules and makes it easier for the oil and vinegar, which is water-based, to mix together," Yeung explains. Plus, it creates a dressing that's thicker and wants to add more to your salad.
Emulsifiers include ingredients like honey, mayonnaise, and mustard, all of which you'll want to put in a salad dressing anyway, Bill Williamson, executive chief of BLT Prime by David Burke in Washington, DC, tells SELF. Things like tomato paste, tahini, miso, and egg yolks also fall into the emulsifier category.
In general, use a ratio of three parts oil to one part vinegar, plus a bit of an emulsifier.
For a perfect dressing, Williamson says you should use three parts oil to one part of vinegar, plus a bit of emulsifier, which can be anywhere from a teaspoon to a tablepoon depending on the quantity
Yeung says you can use seasoning and other ingredients (like chopped garlic or shallot) in whatever quantity you want.
Start with a small amount of olive oil and vinegar. From there, be as experimental as you like, Jessica Swift R.D. and chef, tells SELF.
To prove that this formula is up to snuff, I used it to create three quick vinaigrettes off the cuff for this story.
Without even glancing at a recipe, I follow this formula to create three of my own quickie salad dressings. I only had olive oil available, so that's the only kind of oil I used, but you can use whatever you have or prefer. Yeung enjoys avocado oil; sesame and flaxseed oils are good options, too. Ditto acid sources-you can use white wine, red wine, apple cider, or rice vinegar, any kind of citrus juice, or anything else you can think of that's acidic.
The first was a basic balsamic vinaigrette.
I combined 1 tablespoon of balsamic vinegar with 3 tablespoons of olive oil, as well as 1 teaspoon of mustard, and a dash of thyme. I quickly whiskey it together with a fork and within a minute it became thick and rich.
For this dressing, I used 1 tablespoon of apple cider vinegar, 3 tablespoons of Olive oil, 1 teaspoon of mustard, and 1 teaspoon of honey, plus salt and pepper to taste.
I finished with a tahini lemon dressing.
To make it, I used 1 tablespoon lemon juice, 3 tablespoons olive oil, 1 teaspoon of tahini, and a bit of salt and pepper. Nutty, fluffy, and creamy, this one would be perfect in a Mediterranean-style grain bowl.