Salad dressing is something I have not purchased in a very long time. Back when I did purchase it, the ingredient list, no matter how “organic”, always contained something I had concerns about. As a result, I began making my own dressing and will never turn back. It is so simple and one of the most nourishing things we put on the table.
Here are a list of reasons I make my own dressing:
1. I know what goes into it.
2. I can choose ingredients that add to the nutrient density of my meal. In other words, I am getting my vitamins and minerals from my salad dressing.
3. I get to put my wonderful herbal infused vinegars and occasionally an herbal infused oil to the dressing (which lends itself to #2). Vinegar is a great medium for extracting vitamins and minerals as well as supporting the body in assimilating them.
4. I can add new ingredients along the way, making each dressing unique and interesting.
5. This dressings also makes a great dipping sauce for bread, vegetables and whatever else you are inclined to dip.
6. I can make enough for a week or two in 5 minutes.
Adding herbs through infused vinegars and/or oils adds to the dressings the nutrients that the vinegar and/or oil extract from the plant. Vinegar will extract a wide spectrum of vitamins and minerals and provides the perfect menstruum for nutrient absorption. And if you use raw apple cider vinegar you benefit from the extra nutrients in the vinegar.
I often serve this dressing at class lunches, wild eats dinners and during the apprenticeship program. I am often asked for the recipe, so here it is. Enjoy!
Salad Dressing and/or Dipping Sauce
1 cup Olive oil
1 TBS miso paste or more to taste (in addition to our own homemade miso, we like South River Miso. Of course you can use any Miso paste that you have access to)
1-2 TBS raw local honey
½ cup apple cider vinegar
¼ cup Tamari or Shoyu (another fermented soy type sauce)
Combine above ingredients in jar and shake or wisk together.
I sometimes add buttermilk which thickens it and adds a creamy texture. You can also add ground flax seeds, ginger, and/or garlic to make an Asian-inspired dressing.
This can be used on salads, any vegetable dish, grain dishes and/or as a marinade. The more miso you add the thicker the dressing will be.
Of course those of you who are like me, a scratch cook, you will add whatever you have available to create your very own version.