Vinaigrette, and borage vinegar.

Date: Fri, 10 May 1996 10:46:03 -0300
To: The Culinary Herbs & Spices List <HERBS.HOME.EASE.LSOFT.COM>
From: Mindy Vinqvist <mvinqvist.MTA.CA>
Subject: Vinaigrette

> Also for the person who wanted to know what to do with borage. When it blooms, I make borage vinegar from the blossoms, that naturally turns the prettiest blue color and is useful in making vinaigrettes.

While I do know how to make herbal vinegar, I have no idea how one makes a vinaigrette (or really what one is) although I have recipes I want to try that asks for vinegarette. If this isn't considered out of place for the list, could somebody please fill me in on this subject? (Just keep referring to 'herbal vinegarette', then it'll fit in!)

From: Pat Peck <arpeck.FREENET.SCRI.FSU.EDU>
Subject: Re: Borage vinegar

> Tell me more about the borage flower vinegar - how many cups of flowers to cups of vinegar - how long should it sit before using - etc.

To make borage vinegar

1 ½ cups fresh borage flowers (I add a little of the stem and leaves for more intense flavor)
Wash and blot dry.
4 cups white wine vinegar (do not use distilled white vinegar)

Place in large jar. (I use mason jars with plastic over jar lip under lid)
Heat vinegar to just before boil. Pour into jar. Stir. Place in dark place for 3 to 4 weeks. Go by and stir from time to time.

Hope y'all enjoy.

P.S. You can cheat and add a tiny drop of blue food coloring ifnot blue enough.

From: Pat Peck <arpeck.FREENET.SCRI.FSU.EDU>

A vinaigrette is just a simple quick and easy way to dress a salad without sacrificing the taste. Usually a vinaigrette calls for oil in a 3 to 1 ratio to the vinegar. That's what's so much fun about using vinaigrettes. You can experiment and use all of those vingars and oils you've made from the herbs in your garden.

A classic french vinaigrette is:
2 tablespoons wine vinegar (any type of herbal vinegar you might like)
6 tablespoons olive oil, extra virgin preferred (sometimes I'll use 2 tablespoons of the 6 with garlic oil, rosemary oil, basil oil, lemon oil (homemade of course)
1 teaspoon salt (I use less - to taste)
⅛ teaspoon freshly ground pepper

Put vinegar, salt and pepper in a small bowl. Beat the mixture with wire whisk or fork until the salt dissolves. Add the olive oil and beat until creamy. Let stand for 5 minutes and beat again.
For garlic version Add a clove of crushed garlic after the olive oil has been beaten. Let stand for 10 minutes, remove garlic and beat again. As I stated above sometimes I'll use 2 tablespoons of garlic oil instead of clove of garlic. Makes ½ cup.

Another tangier type of vinaigrette

¾ cup olive oil, extra virgin
2 tablespoons wine vinegar (here again experiment with herbal vinegars)
1 tablespoon lemon juice
1 teaspoon mustard (dijon) or ½ teaspoon dried mustard
¼ teaspoon salt, or to taste
⅛ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

Put vinegar, lemon juice, mustard, salt and pepper in bowl and whisk until salt dissolves. Add olive and and mix well. Let stand 10 minutes. whisk again before serving. Makes 1 cup.

A lot of times I just use a jar and shake it all together. Makes it easy and quick. If you really feel lazy, dump into food processor.

This mustard & thyme vinaigrette is especially good done in food processor.

7 Tbsp. olive oil
2 Tbsp. red wine vinegar (this one plain red wine vinegar is best)
1 Tbsp. Dijon
½ tsp. dried thyme or 2 tsp. fresh thyme (lemon thyme is nice or oregano thyme (I really have such a thing)
2 tsps. soy sauce
1 small clove garlic, coarsely chopped
¼ tsp. freshly ground black pepper

Put vinegar, dijon mustard (again use dried mustard ½ to ¾ tsp. is you prefer), thyme, soy sauce, garlic and pepper into food processor. Pulse for 3 seconds or until well blended. Add the olive oil and pulse again until fully integrated. Makes ⅔ cup.

I hope this helps you. Vinaigrette's are just a lot of fun and a great way to experiment and use up all those herbal vinegars and oils. That's what I like about them they sound impressive but they're not stuffy.

Hope y'all enjoy.

From: Jennifer Kersten <jenni4k.INWAVE.COM>

>As a very new grower of herbs (in pots, on my balcony) and as a colon cancer survivor, I am unable to eat large leaf veggies any more and so wanted to perk up salads made with ordinary if uninspiring lettuce etc. I am looking for any help you have to give for vinaigrette dressings. What I have tried so far have been complete disasters. I obviously have all the proportions out of line, and what I have produced could possibly be used as a hair restorer or perhaps shark repellant!
> What kinds of vinegars and what kinds of herbs? What proportions?
> All and any help would be most gratefully received.

I tried this one last night and it was wonderful. Fat-free and simple to make. I got it out of a magazine, and put it on a mixed veggie salad with tomatoes and green peppers, carrots and fresh corn.

Mexican vinaigrette

¾ c. tomato juice (I used a jalapeno bloody mary mix)
½ c. fresh cilantro sprigs
¼ c. fresh lime juice
½ t. dried oregano (I used a few fresh leaves)
¼ t. salt
¼ t. ground cumin
OPTIONAL: 1 small jalapeno pepper, halved and seeded (I opted out of this because of the jalapenos in the mix)

Place ingredients in food processor or blender; process until smooth.
Yield: 1 cup (¼ cup per serving)

From: Patti Mcclure <mcclure.ORION.NECA.COM>

Here is my recipe for "vinagrette"--

In a small jar add: 1 teaspoon mustard and fill jar up to ¼ with vinegar.
Shake well.
Add 1 or 2 cloves crushed garlic, salt and pepper. Shake well.
Add oil. (3 parts oil to 1 part vinegar) Shake well.

Of course, you can experiment with a variety of herbs. Enjoy!!

From: Esther Czekalski <E.Czekalski.M.BULL.COM>

Basically a vinegarette is a sour + fat + flavorings.

The sour can be citrus or fruit juices as well as vinegars. The fat can be any kind of (food, not motor) oil that you like. I'm not sure if a dressing using butter for fat is ever called a vinegarette but it wouldn't shock me.

The usual proportion is one part sour to two parts fat and flavorings to taste. Specific sours may overwhelm specific oils at those proportions, or vice versa, so always check the taste and adjust if needed

With all the kinds of fruits/vinegars and oils out there, one can be very creative, also there are vinegarettes to serve hot or cold, it goes on and on.

And a simple salad can become a special ritual. Here's mine for spring. Rub a large wooden bowl with a cut clove of garlic. In the bottom of the bowl, combine vigorously: One tablespoon of balsamic or wine vinegar (the sweetness of the balsamic vinegar is good with leaf lettuce that is a little bitter), two tablespoons of good olive oil. 1 Tablespoon of chopped chives, and two more tablespoons of whatever herbs (chopped) that I can scavenge from the garden, (even my seedlings have been known to get pinched) and 20 or 30 grinds of pepper, I let the guests salt their own but you could also add salt to taste.

Make sure the greens are washed and dried (I love my salad spinner. Drying the greens allows the oil to stick to the leaves.) Then put the greens in the bowl. At this point you can even cover and refigerate the whole thing for an hour or so. Just before serving: take hold of the greens with a clean hand (forget tossing with forks) and gently swish the greens in the dressing at the bottom of the bowl with a circular turning motion until all of the greens are moistened with the dressing. If the herbs were chopped finely enough they will stick to the greens. Serve with pride.

These greens can also be used as a bed for things like sliced radishes, baby beets...

From: "Melanie S. Hoyer" <pcc64658.TELEPORT.COM>

>What kinds of vinegars and what kinds of herbs? What proportions?

Here's my recipe. It's an old one from Europe and is great.

Salad dressing:
juice from ½ lemon (fresh)
¼ tsp lemon pepper (or more)
½ tsp dijon mustard (don't use that awful yellow stuff)
3 TBsp olive oil (the purest will be a little green in color).

use more olive oil if the dressing is too tart.

Salad: finely chop 3 or more shallots
1 to 2 small cloves garlic, finely chopped (I always use the garlic and onions with whatever combination of greens I use.)
basil leaves
very young oregano leaves
finely chopped dill
finely chopped chives

use all of the above, or a combination of some of them, for a 2 pint bowl. Also add a tomato, and a couple of mushrooms if you like. It's easy to make too much.

Use the same dressing for:
1 can kidney beans (drained)
2 cans green beans (drained)
2 TBsp green olives, chopped (more if you like)
4 medium potatoes, boiled, cooled and cut into small chewable bites.

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