French Vinaigrette

I have never really understood the concept of buying a ready made vinaigrette. It’s one of those things that are just so easy to make at home and depending on the ingredients they pretty much keep for forever in the refrigerator. While store bought vinaigrette can be temp time with their endless variety of flavors – raspberry, chipotle, italian, ranch, caesar so on and so forth, they are often full of preservatives, additives and sodium to keep the flavor and texture going for long periods of time. This is my standard go-to vinaigrette. Not your american style french dressing but what most french people use and serve on their salads. I love the sharpness of Dijon mustard and the tang of the white wine vinegar. It keeps for a solid 2 weeks in the refrigerator and you can easily just change things up with a few ingredients.

My standard ratio in making dressings is 1/3 vinegar or acidity to 2/3 oil, then I adjust according to my preference at the moment. Creating salad dressings is fairly easy if you bear this ratio in mind, you can add a splash of juice, fresh herbs, minced shallots, switch up your oils and vinegars to play around with. You may also skip the Dijon mustard all together. Let your palate guide you and adjust the seasoning and flavors along the way.

This particular dressing is so easy and goes on everything! Not only do I love the strong mustard flavors, I love the creamy texture it lends to the ensemble.

basic fernch vinaigrette bottle

French Vinaigrette

1/2 tablespoon Dijon mustard (not yellow, not English but real good DIjon mustard)

2 tablespoons white wine vinegar or for a slightly sweeter profile white balsamic vinegar

4 tablespoons olive oil

salt and fresh cracked pepper to taste

In a small bowl, place the mustard and the vinegar and whisk is slowly the olive oil creating an emulsion. You can use a small whisk or a fork with some effort will do. Season to taste. Consequently when you multiply the recipe you can place it in a jar or bottle and shake it vigorously. Leave it in the refrigerator for your next usage and when things separate just give it a good shake.

Here are some variations you can do:

Cheat Caesar Dressing:

-add a smashed clove of garlic and some grated parmesan, you can also add a minced anchovy if you wish.

Mediterranean Dressing:

-replace the vinegar for fresh lemon juice and add some fresh chopped parsley

Frenchier than French:

-add some minced shallots and fresh chopped tarragon leaves

Mexican Flavors:

-replace vinegar with lime juice, add a bit of chili powder, cayenne for some heat and minced cilantro

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