Recipes - Caesar Dressing and Herbed Vinaigrette

Clients often ask me what dressings they can use to make their salads taste better. I generally steer people clear of commercial dressings, even the 'natural' ones - ya never know what quality oils they are using. Also the use of clear bottles means consistent exposure to light, which leads to potential rancidity for the oils that they do use. So I'm offering up a couple of simple options for dressings that you can make in 5 - 15 minutes. These will store in your fridge for up to 2 weeks.

homemade caesar dressing

homemade caesar dressing

Herbed Vinaigrette

This is our go-to, although I usually make it right on the salad. I just eye it, pouring the oil on first, tossing the salad, then the vinegar and lemon juice, tossing, then the herbs, salt and pepper for one final toss. If you're an eye-it kinda chef, go for it. You'll find the combos that work perfectly for you. For those of you who prefer to cook with amounts clarified, here you go. Note that you can use any herbs that you love for a change of flavour. We're particularly fond of this combo. Basil and tarragon also come in as two of the 'Top 5' herbs for Omega 3 fatty acid content. These are the very important essential fats that we get in flax and chia seeds.

1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil (dark glass bottles only)
2 tb white wine vinegar (could also use balsamic if you fancy it)
1 tb lemon juice (from fresh lemons)
1/2 tsp dried 2 tsp fresh basil
1/2 tsp dried or 2 tsp fresh tarragon
1/4 tsp sea salt
1/4 tsp fresh ground black pepper

Combine all ingredients in a jar. Refrigerate. Shake before using.

Caesar Dressing

This dressing takes a little more time and requires the use of the blender. However, it's worth it if you want something creamy to add to your salads. Far from being off the list of healthy eating, this dressing offers the benefit of extra protein from the eggs and anchovies. Plus the anchovies are an excellent source of the most bioavailable form of Omega 3 that we get from fatty fish.
This dressing gets better when it sits in the fridge for a few hours or more so ideally make it ahead of time.

2 hard boiled eggs (I generally like a 6-7 minute egg but you can use harder or softer if you have it in your fridge)
6 anchovy fillets
2 tb fresh lemon juice
2 tb white wine vinegar
1/4 tsp sea salt
1/4 tsp fresh ground pepper

3/4 cup extra virgin olive oil (from a dark glass bottle)

Blend the first six ingredients to a smooth and creamy consistency. With the blender on low-medium speed, add the olive oil in a slow stream to ensure emulsification, i.e. that there is no separation of oil and vinegar. Refrigerate in a jar. Shake before serving.

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