Salad dressing is the glue that holds the salad together. Without it, your greens are some kind of sad, vegetable medley. But which salad dressing should be used for which ingredients? Can’t you just use one staple recipe for everything? Absolutely not- depending on the season, the event, and the salad ingredients, you should always switch up your recipe in order to create the tastiest salad imaginable. So, next time you get asked to bring the starter to a dinner party, fret not, as you will be well-equipped with the knowledge of which dressing is best for the occasion.
1. Red Wine Vinaigrette
This dressing is tart and slightly acidic. An added plus is that it uses 1/4 of a cup of red wine vinegar, not wine itself, so you can reserve your drinking supplies. Add a tablespoon of Dijon mustard, a teaspoon of sugar, and half a cup of olive oil. Whisk together, with salt and pepper added to taste. It’s a great dressing for salads with scallions, goats’ cheese, or even salads with sliced apples and pears.
2. Blue Cheese Dressing
A creamy dressing that goes well with Waldorf salad, or a great dip for a grazing table. You can easily crumble 1/3 of a cup of blue cheese into 1/3 of mayonnaise and 1/3 cup of sour cream. Add a tablespoon of lemon juice to balance out the richness of the blue cheese, and then crack in some salt and pepper to taste. Blending the ingredients together will create and even smoother texture.
Balsamic salad dressing is so simple to make and it’s versatile for different salads. It requires only one tablespoon of its namesake balsamic vinegar, as well as 1/4 of a cup of olive oil. Add 2 teaspoons of salad dressing staple, wholegrain mustard, as well as a close of crushed garlic, some slat and pepper, and a pinch of brown sugar. This dressing is best shaken rather than stirred. Combine the ingredients in a screw-top jar, then twist the lid on and shake it up.
Changs dressing is sweet and sour, which is great for Chinese cabbage and crunchy fried noodles. The dressing is made up of a 1/4 cup of white vinegar, with a 1/4 cup of caster sugar and 1/4 of peanut oil. Add 2 tablespoons of sesame oil, and 2 teaspoons of sesame oil. Stir the ingredients until the sugar is completely dissolved.
5. Roast Lemon Vinaigrette
This salad dressing is easy to make, using lemons and honey. So, if you’re down with a cold, this recipe may have all the healing benefits of a hot lemon drink. Start by halving two lemons, and removing the seeds. Bake them cut-side down in an oven at 400˚ F, marinated in one teaspoon of olive oil. They should have browned slightly after 30 minutes. Once they have cooled, separate the skin, and add the fruit and juices from the baking dish to 1 tablespoon of honey, half a teaspoon of salt, and 3 tablespoons of olive oil.
Instead of buying this salad dressing from a store, try making it from home to get it just right. This simplified yet authentic version requires 1 cup of mayonnaise, t tablespoon of lemon juice, a teaspoon of Worcestershire sauce, 4 tablespoons of milk, a minced clove of garlic, half a cup of grated parmesan, and salt and pepper to taste. Combine all the ingredients using a bar mix until you get the desired consistency. Caesar dressing goes perfectly with Caesar salad, of course.
7. Poppy Seed Dressing
Poppy seed dressing is great for peppery greens like rocket, or a classic spinach salad. To make it, dissolve 1/4 of a cup of sugar into 1/4 of white wine vinegar by mixing vigorously. Finely grate a shallot into the mix, and whisk in 1 tablespoon of poppy seeds, half a teaspoon of salt, half a teaspoon of ground mustard, and two teaspoons of mayonnaise. Finally, whisk in half a cup of olive oil in gradual doses until completely combined.
8. Brown Butter Vinaigrette
Substituting the standard olive oil in most dressing recipes may seem detrimental to the overall healthiness of your salad, but taking everything in moderation applies here. Melt 2 cups of butter in a tall saucepot. The butter will foam, leaving milk solids at the bottom of the pot, which will brown. Once browned, strain the solids slowly through a sieve onto a bowl filled with one diced shallot. Once cooled, mix in 1 teaspoon of mustard, a tablespoon of honey, and half a cup of apple cider vinegar. Season with salt to taste.
What’s your favourite salad dressing? Comment below.
Hi, I'm Kelsey! I'm studying a Bachelor of Arts at The University of Melbourne. In my spare time, I like to read, get distracted by YouTube videos, and browse Instagram all day long.