Saucy Lady – A New Twist on Vinaigrettes

Do vinaigrettes sound boring? Perhaps they have been and you’ve had a few blah ones. But what I’ve discovered lately is that vinaigrettes are not just for salads, my friends. Nope, they can liven up white fish like mahi mahi or grouper, spice up some chicken, or, yes, even flavorize your salads. I prepare the fish/chicken and then let it cool in a pool of vinaigrette. So like a marinade right? It’s even better if you do that and then pop it in the fridge for a few hours and then reheat the next day. I like to prepare one of these in bulk and store in a squeeze bottle for easy eatin’. Note too that the longer they sit, the more the flavor will change. For example with the lemon one, the lemon flavor will mellow out and your mustard will come through more. So don’t freak out if you pucker up tasting the lemon vinaigrette at first. I’d try to eat it or get rid of after about 2-3 weeks though, otherwise it gets a bit bland. That being said – I am all for changing up a recipe to meet your tastes. If you want more lemon, add more lemon. Think it needs to be toned down a bit? Add more of another ingredient.

These are dead easy. I don’t know why more people don’t make their own dressing. Even ranch dressing is dead easy to make (I promise). And then you can control the flavors/preservatives/salt levels too. DJ Snuggle Monster loves spinach (yes, just straight spinach…gross) so he eats this up.

SERVINGS: About one squeeze bottle/salad bottle full…so I’d say about 2-3 cups.

TIMING: Like 10 minutes tops. Tops. It’s so quick I don’t know why you don’t make these all the time.

INGREDIENTS:

For the Lemon Vinaigrette:

  • 2/3 cup fresh squeezed lemon juice (yes it matters that it’s fresh)
  • 1 cup olive oil
  • 3 tablespoons water
  • 1 teaspoon cayenne
  • Salt and Pepper
  • 2 1/2 tablespoons dijon mustard

For the Blackberry Vinaigrette:

  • 2 cups fresh blackberries (one large package…you could use thawed frozen blackberries too, just lessen the amount of olive oil because of the added liquid with frozen)
  • 1/2 cup white balsamic vinegar (white balsamic is a bit more delicate and less in-your-face, but if you like more punch, go for regular balsamic)
  • 1 cup olive oil
  • 1 shallot, chopped into large pieces
  • 3-4 cloves of garlic (depending on size and your garlic tendencies)
  • 1 sprig rosemary leaves, de-stemmed
  • 3 tablespoons honey
  • Salt and Pepper

DIRECTIONS:

For the Lemon Vinaigrette: Add everything into a measuring cup and whisk. Taste and adjust seasoning accordingly. Add more water to thin it out if necessary. Once your seasoning is how you like it, transfer to squeeze bottle. Alternatively, add everything into an air-tight/sealed bottle and shake the crap out of it until it emulsifies (thickens basically). You can store at room temperature for as long as you like.

For the Blackberry Vinaigrette: In a blender or food processor, add the blackberries, 3 tablespoons of honey, shallot, garlic, and rosemary. Blend until smooth. Strain this mixture (to get out all those seeds and large chunks) into a small bowl. In a measuring cup, measure your vinegar, oil, salt, and pepper. Add your blackberry mixture. Mix and taste. Transfer to your squeeze bottle and store in fridge.

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