blue-cheeseThis week I’m going to focus on some classic dressings, such as blue cheese, ranch and 1000 Islands.  Bleu cheese is one of my favorite dressings, which you can also use Roquefort cheese, Gorgonzola, or any of the other wonderful blue vein cheeses that add a certain punch to any dressing. Use the lite versions of sour cream and mayo to cut calories and fats.  In some markets, bleu cheese is available in a crumbled form.  That will work fine and save you some time.

INGREDIENTS

Buttermilk

Sour cream

Mayonnaise

1/4 lb. of Bleu cheese – crumbled

White wine vinegar or any white vinegar such as champagne

Level spoonful of sugar

1 clove of pressed or finely chopped garlic

Salt and pepper to taste

DIRECTIONS

Buttermilk to the 1/3 orange line of SaladSuccess Shaker

Sour cream to the 2/3 orange line

Mayonnaise to the top orange line

Add 3 spoonfuls of vinegar

Add spoonful of sugar

Add blue cheese and garlic*

Salt & pepper to taste

Shake vigorously in the SaladSuccess Shaker

Unscrew SaladSuccess top and pour enough dressing over bed of greens.

*If you want this dressing to be more flexible (you can use it as a base for other herbs and cheeses), shake the dressing up (with salt & pepper)  BEFORE ADDING THE BLEU CHEESE & GARLIC, pour enough dressing to the bottom of the salad bowl and then mix in the bleu cheese and garlic. Place greens in the bowl, and let the salad rest until serving time.


My daily homegrown heirloom harvest!

I never had this dressing in France.  Seems the French are nuts about vinaigrette, and when traveling in the USA, are confused about “french dressing” .  So as a kid, I never understood the term “French Dressing”.  Later I found that this is a lovely tomato base dressing that works well for any green salad.  By creating a garlic infusion base, the dressing takes on a subtle flavoring.

INGREDIENTS

Olive oil

Red wine vinegar

Tomato paste

Mustard

Sugar

Garlic – 2 cloves peeled and chopped roughly

Salt & pepper

DIRECTIONS

Olive Oil to the 2/3 orange line

Vinegar to the top orange line

Add chopped garlic

3 heaping spoonfuls of tomato paste

1 heaping spoonful of mustard

1 spoonful of sugar

Salt & pepper to taste

Shake vigorously in SaladSuccess shaker

Refrigerate this dressing

Adapted from The Woman’s Day Cookbook

This recipe is wonderfully versatile.  Often I will use white balsamic vinegar and not use the Dijon mustard if I want a base over a blue cheese or poppy seed topping.  Sometimes I replace the sour cream with crème fraîche for a subtle, luxurious indulgence to my palate.  Try this creamy vinaigrette with different herb & spice  garnishes such a chives, peppercorns, basil or my all time favorite, tarragon.

INGREDIENTS

Olive Oil

Red wine or balsamic vinegar

Dijon mustard

Sour cream

Salt & pepper

Herbs for garnish

DIRECTIONS

Olive oil to the blue oil line of SaladSuccess shaker

Add vinegar to the blue vinegar line

1 spoonful of Dijon mustard

3 tablespoons of sour cream

Salt and pepper to taste

Shake vigorously

Pour over garnishes

I love Jaime Oliver’s book Happy Days with the Naked Chef in which he suggests to serve this dressing over mustard cress, Japanese daikon cut into strips, mango and scallops.  For those of you who are adventurous, add chunks of raw fish mullet purchased from a reputable fish shop.  If you don’t have crème fraîche, whip a pint of heavy whipping cream with a tablespoon of sour cream.

INGREDIENTS

Crème fraîche

Oil oil

3 lemons

Dijon mustard

Soy Sauce

Salt & pepper

DIRECTIONS

Broil or grill lemon halves for 5 minutes

Olive oil to the 1/3 orange line of SaladSuccess Shaker

Crème fraiche to the 2/3 orange line

Squeeze lemons and strain them into shaker

1 tsp soy sauce

1 heaping tsp of mustard

1 dash of salt & pepper

Shake vigorously in the SaladSuccess Shaker

Suzanne likes to eat this with naan, a Persian-Indian bread. I like it on top of a bed of spinach with mangos and jicama for crunch.  Also tossing some mint or toasted almonds on the salad would be wonderful. To turn it into a meal, add grilled chicken, tofu or shrimp.

Ingredients

coconut milk – I prefer light

yogurt  – I use low fat

2 limes

Spoonful of soy sauce

½ Spoonful of curry powder

Dash of cayenne pepper

Directions

Coconut milk to the 2/3 orange line

Yogurt to the top orange line

Add juice of 2 limes, soy sauce, curry powder and cayenne

Shake vigorously

Adapted from Recipezaar, Pink Cherry Blossom,  November 19, 2006

Cool and creamy  for the summer months.  You can replace the sour cream with buttermilk if you wish. Use this vinaigrette for green and fruit salads, possibly add edible flowers.

Ingredients

  • Olive or vegetable oil
  • Raspberry vinegar
  • Sour Cream – regular or light
  • Honey
  • Salt
  • Cayenne Pepper
  • 1 tsp. of thyme

Instructions

  • Oil to the 1/3  orange line
  • Raspberry Vinegar to the 2/3  orange line
  • Sour Cream to the top orange line
  • Spoonful of Honey
  • Pinch of Salt
  • Pinch of Cayenne Pepper
  • Shake vigorously

Put chopped thyme over the salad, then pour dressing.

Suzanne and I had this marvelous refreshing dressing on a bed of mesclun greens with avocado, red peppers, green onions, goat cheese,  and salmon.  Don’t forget to put the cilantro and lime zest on top of the salad just before you add the dressing.

Olive Oil

Fresh lime juice – about 5 limes

Sour Cream – regular or light

Dijon Mustard

Lime Zest

Coriander

Cumin

Salt

Cayenne

Olive oil to the 1/3 orange line

Lime juice to the 2/3 orange line

Sour cream to the top orange line

1 tsp salt

1 tsp coriander

1 tsp cumin

1 heaping tsp of mustard

½ tsp of cayenne pepper

Shake vigorously

Put lime zest on salad along with 1/4 bunch of cilantro on the top of salad

Suggestions for Salad

Mix greens, arugula, mangoes, figs, feta cheese, goat cheese, onion, green onion, avocado, tomatoes, dried fruit, mix nuts, tuna, salmon, chicken, steak, lamb, eggs

Put the Orange zest on top of your salad and then pour dressing over. This is wonderful on a green salad with fruit and nuts, such as apples, pears, walnuts and almonds. And try it with gourmet vinegars. Marvelous over pears, walnuts and spinach.

Ingredients

  • Oil – olive or walnut
  • Rice Wine Vinegar
  • Plain yogurt
  • Orange Zest
  • Juice from 1/2 orange
  • 1 tsp. of Dijon mustard
  • Salt
  • Pepper

Instructions

  • Oil to the 1/3 line
  • Add Vinegar to the 2/3 line
  • Add yogurt to the top orange line
  • Tsp of Dijon mustard
  • Add orange or lemon juice
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • Shake vigorously

spinach-saladTry this dressing over a bed of spinach and brown rice with green onions. Also great on spinach salad with bacon and egg. Since this is a thick dressing, it should be taken out of the refrigerator ½ hour before pouring.

Ingredients

  • Buttermilk
  • Plain yogurt
  • Tahini
  • Cumin (Optional)
  • Salt
  • Pepper
  • Pressed clove of garlic

Directions

  • Buttermilk to the 1/3 line
  • Add Tahini to the 2/3 line
  • Add yogurt to the top orange line
  • Add Clove of pressed garlic
  • Add 1/4 tsp. of cumin
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • Shake vigorously

buttermilk-dressingI absolutely love this dressing and it is so versatile. You can even use it on cold or warm salmon. Just perfect for the summer days. Try this base dressing with crumpled gorgonzola or blue cheese on top of your salad.

Ingredients

  • Buttermilk
  • Sour Cream
  • Salt
  • Pepper
  • Clove of Garlic
  • Half bunch of Dill

Instructions

  • Buttermilk to the 1/2 line
  • Add sour cream to the top blue line
  • Add clove of pressed garlic
  • Add well chopped dill
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • Shake vigorously