The one salad dressing I make about 90% of the time gets the most comments regarding how delicious it tastes. When I get questioned on how I made it, my answer is always the same:
fresh lemon juice
salt and pepper.
Often I don’t bother mixing it first, I simply drizzle it over the salad and then toss everything together. The amount of each depends on your taste and how zingy you like it. Roughly I’d say double the olive oil to your lemon juice. You can mix it first of course, if you’d like to taste it until you’re happy. Over time you will develop a feel for how much of each to put in and you might start tossing it in the salad bowl straight away like me.
A few things to note that will make a difference
- Fresh lemon juice only, as in cut and squeezed. Nothing out of a bottle.
- Be generous with the olive oil. Please don’t go all low fat on me here ;).
- Use good salt! If you use cheap table salt in your dressing, that’s exactly what it’s going to taste like. Instead, invest in some great local salt like Murray River Salt or Tasman Sea Salt, which are high in minerals and will deliver more depth of flavour.
- Freshly ground pepper is best.
There you go! Fits with everything, I promise you. You’ll have vibrant vegetable dishes in no time with minimal effort.
A couple of other simple salad dressing options
In case you don’t have lemons at home, you can change the acidic part of the dressing to red or white wine vinegar. You may need to be a little more careful with the amount here as it can be quite bitey.
I like to dress finely shredded red cabbage with red wine vinegar rather than lemon juice.
Balsamic vinegar or glaze is not so great, unless you go for the real deal aged one (which can be pricey). When you buy it make sure to check the label, you want to avoid any added sugar. Unless you’re cool with that, than go right ahead :).
If I’m after a creamy dressing I mix mayonnaise (or vegenaise in our house – I like this brand) with lemon juice and a sprinkle of salt.
Works well on anything that needs a little freshening up, great on roast vegetables, heartier salads, or a bowl of leftovers.
You can absolutely season all those dressings further if you like. Herbs, spices – the options are endless. At the moment, it works well for me to have as few ingredients as possible, for maximum benefits.
What are your salad dressing staples?
Peace, love and veggies,