How To Make A Basic Vinaigrette
How to Make Vinaigrette
There is nothing quite like sitting outside in the summer sun and eating a salad tossed with homemade vinaigrette. You too can enjoy this lovely dining experience. Just keep in mind when making vinaigrette that the ratio of acidic ingredient (lemon or balsamic vinegar) to olive oil is one to three. Scroll down to Step 1 to learn how to make your own vinaigrette.
One lemon or four tablespoons lemon juice
Sugar, brown sugar, or honey
Making Basic Vinaigrette
Add a small amount of mustard to a small bowl.You should add a dollop of mustard that is about the size of your fingertip. Mustard acts as an emulsifying agent--when two liquids don’t mix, like water and oil, mustard breaks them down and helps them to mix.
- You can also add a fingertip-sized dollop of mayonnaise to the bowl. Mayo is also an emulsifier and adds a nice creamy texture to the vinaigrette. However, for a lower-calorie vinaigrette, skip the mayo.
Add your acidic element to the bowl.This item will depend on the kind of vinaigrette you are making. The most standard vinaigrette is one made with lemons. Squeeze one fresh lemon into your bowl. If you don’t have a fresh lemon, you can also use four tablespoons of bottled lemon juice. Whisk the lemon juice with the other ingredients in the bowl. Make sure that it is thoroughly mixed.
- Other options for your acidic element include red wine, white wine, and apple cider vinegar.
Add the olive oil.To properly combine all of the ingredients, continue to whisk the lemon mixture while slowly pouring in the olive oil. Whisking while pouring will help the water-based lemon juice combine with the oil. Continue to whisk until all of the ingredients are thoroughly combined.
Add your seasonings.For a basic vinaigrette, all you need to ad is salt and pepper. Add as much or as little as you like. Season to taste. If you want to add other herbs, now is the time to do so. Other herbs you might like to add include:
- Minced garlic, onion, or shallot.
- Finely chopped basil, parsley, thyme, or dill.
- Other spices like paprika or cumin.
Pour the vinaigrette over your salad.Only do this right before you are about to eat so that the lettuce does not get soggy. Enjoy!
Making Balsamic Vinaigrette
Add the balsamic vinegar to a bowl.Mix in the sugar and salt and whisk until these ingredients dissolve. After they have dissolved, add the pepper and garlic. The pepper, garlic, and salt are optional. Whisk the mixture until it is blended.
- If you are using a high quality balsamic vinegar, rather than a cheaper version, you will most likely not need to add the sugar. Once you have mixed in the salt, pepper, and garlic, taste the mixture. Add sugar if so desired.
Whisk the mixture while adding the oil.To help the vinegar and oil fuse together, keep whisking while you add a few drops of oil at a time. Once you have added all of the required oil, keep whisking for a few more moments to make sure that the ingredients are blended. Taste the vinaigrette and add more seasonings if you want to.
- Add other ingredients if desired. Some recipes call for adding a dollop of grainy mustard, some chopped herbs, or minced shallots or onions. Feel free to experiment with your dressing.
Toss the salad with the balsamic vinaigrette.Do this right before you eat so that the salad does not get soggy. If you are not planning on using the vinaigrette right away, pour it into a container with a lid. When you are ready to use it, whisk it again as the ingredients will separate while the dressing sits in the fridge.
Other Types of Vinaigrettes
QuestionIs there a method I can use so the oil and vinegar don't separate?wikiHow ContributorCommunity AnswerStart by adding a tablespoon of mustard (Dijon is good) and a tablespoon of honey to the vinegar. Mix well before slowly adding the oil while whisking continuously. Stop when it reaches the desired consistency.Thanks!
To make a basic vinaigrette, start by combining yellow mustard and fresh lemon juice in a bowl. Next, add olive oil and whisk until all the ingredients are thoroughly combined. Finally, add salt, pepper, and any other seasonings you like. Alternatively, whisk together sugar, salt, balsamic vinegar, and olive oil to make a balsamic vinaigrette. Serve immediately over a salad, or store in an airtight container in the refrigerator.
- No mustard? Use salt instead, although mustard adds to the flavor of the vinaigrette.
- Remember that the standard ratio for making balsamic vinaigrette is one part vinegar to three parts olive oil.
Sources and Citations
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Video: Gordon Ramsay How to Make a Classic Vinaigrette YouTube
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