One of the first things you’re taught at culinary school is
how to make an emulsified salad dressing. Of course, we were no longer allowed
to call them “dressings,” and had to refer to them by the proper French name,
“vinaigrette,” but I knew deep down they were the same thing.
After learning how to spell “vinaigrette,” which I’m still
working on to this day, we were set up with bowls and whisks, and shown how to
properly achieve the celebrated emulsification. The chefs demonstrated that by
slowly dripping oil into vinegar while whisking like crazy, one could magically
bond the two elements together.
It took quite a while, and despite a burning shoulder, and
cramping forearm, the method did work beautifully. The dressing was perfectly
emulsified, and stayed that way. I was impressed. Of course, the next day they
showed us how to do the same thing in a blender in 10 seconds, which really
annoyed everybody. Why not show us the easy way first?
Well, little did I know there was even an easier way, than
the easier way. That’s right, I’m talking about the old “make-n-shake” salad
dressing method. By simply shaking vigorously in a small jar, you can create a
temporary emulsification that should stay blended more than long enough to
dress a salad.
Now let’s be clear, this method should only be used if you
are going to eat your salad right away. The good news is, this accounts for
roughly 95% of salad-related scenarios. For the rest of the time, when you need
the dressing to stay perfectly blended for hours, like on a buffet, you should
use the classic method instead.
cumin vinaigrette that we used on our raw kale salad, and I figured it was the
perfect excuse to demo this simple salad dressing trick. I hope you give it
a try soon. Enjoy!
Ingredients (makes about 3/4 cup):
1 rounded teaspoon Dijon mustard
1 rounded teaspoon orange zest
1 tsp cumin, or to taste
1/4 tsp red pepper flakes, or to taste
1 tbsp fresh orange juice
1/4 cup rice vinegar (or white wine or sherry vinegar)
1/3 cup olive oil, or to taste