|Fresh Salads tossed with various Salad Dressings|
By now you should have bought, washed & mixed your salad together. The next step is deciding on the dressing and with most salad greens this is usually a type of Vinaigrette.
But again, I will repeat the same thing – adjust the dressing based on your own preferences, and what is available in the fridge. I will be posting some recipes for salads in the future, and in almost all the recipes, I have used less oil and more yoghurt because I think the taste of extra virgin olive oil can be strong, so I would reduce from the basic recipe. Similarly, there are a number of additions and substitutions that can be made. Have included a list of basic recipes along with a list of simple additions in the end for experimenting with.
Other Simple Additions to Vinaigrettes:
The above dressings are base recipes, but you can always make additions/substitutions to them based on ingredient availability & your own taste. Sometimes I would add some lemon zest, or fresh herbs, or minced roasted garlic to leftover dressing just to change the taste.
- Herbs: Herbs can be added either fresh or dried to the dressing. If using fresh, then you can add about 1/4 cup of finely chopped mild herbs like parsley, basil or oregano for 1/2 cup of olive oil. If using stronger herbs like rosemary, tarragon or thyme then use about 1 teaspoon. If using dried herbs, then start with adding 1/8 teaspoon, and then add more if required.
- Fresh Garlic: Garlic flavor can be incorporated in three different ways depending on how strong you want it to be. If you want a stronger flavor, then you can mince/finely chop fresh garlic and add it in the dressing. Secondly, you can roast garlic in the oven which turns the flavor mild and sweeter. Thirdly, you can rub a mashed garlic clove around your salad bowl which will just give you a mild garlic flavor.
- Honey, maple syrup or sugar: If you want the dressing to be a bit sweet, you can add sweetener of your sugar. Start off small, 1-2 teaspoon for sugar & 1 tablespoon for honey, and then adjust more based on taste.
- Mustard: 1 teaspoon of good quality mustard, or 1/2 teaspoon of dry mustard can be added.
- Lemon Zest/Orange Zest: Zest of 1 lemon can be added for a lemon vinaigrette, making sure that you use lemon or lime juice for the dressing as well. Orange zest combined with fresh orange juice can also be used.
- Creamy Vinaigrette: Fresh or sour cream, yoghurt or mayonnaise can be used (about 3 tablespoon). Fresh cream is preferred over packaged as that has a much better flavor.
- Soy Sauce: Add 1 tablespoon of soy sauce to give an Asian flavor to salads; best if used with Asian vegetables like spring onions, Bak Choi etc.
Where to get Salad Greens in Karachi:
How to Cook Everything (Completely Revised 10th Anniversary Edition
The New Best Recipe by Cooks Illustrated Magazine