Dressing refers to the sauce or flavoring product that is poured over or tossed with a salad. While a large number of commercial salad dressings may diminish the need to make it from scratch, creating your own at home allows you to customize it to your own personal tastes.
Change the flavor of this basic recipe by substituting the vinegar for raspberry, balsamic, red wine or other flavored vinegars until you get the taste you want.
- 1/2 cup olive oil
- 1/2 cup vinegar
- 1/2 cup white sugar
- 2 teaspoons Dijon mustard
- 1/4 teaspoon dried oregano
- 1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
- Place all the ingredients inside a bottle or jar with a tightly fitting lid.
- Tighten the lid and shake the bottle to mix the ingredients together.
- Keep shaking until the sugar is completely dissolved.
- Shake again just before serving.
Types of Dressings
While the final taste of the dressing may be endless, based on the recipe you use, the basic types of dressings are fairly standard. The two easiest to make at home are:
- Vinegar based: Dressing recipes for green salads may be vinegar-based, called vinaigrettes, which are thin and runny.
- Creamy: Other recipes for green salads may call for a thicker dressing, usually with a base of mayonnaise, sour cream, or yogurt.
Other Uses for Salad Dressing Recipes
Once you've perfected your favorite recipe, try using it in one of these other, traditional ways.
- Russian dressings are the condiment on a Reuben sandwich, and McDonald's "special sauce" is a variety of the classic Thousand Island.
- Crudities are raw vegetables cut into sticks and served with a dipping sauce as an appetizer. Thick dressings make excellent dipping sauces for these crunchy treats, but don't try using a vinaigrette for dipping; it will drip all over your guests' party clothes.
- Try Ranch on a turkey sandwich.
- Top a baked potato with Green Goddess.
- Dip French fries into a French dressing. French is essentially a vinaigrette thickened with ketchup and spices.
Create Your Own Blend
Every dressing recipe can be tweaked by changing the flavoring of the ingredients added to it. Give a basic recipe a try and see if you can create your own signature blend.