Jodi Balis is Capital Area Food Bank’s Resident Dietitian. Follow her on Twitter at @TheRedLentil
Whether it’s pasta salad, juicy sliced tomatoes and fresh basil layered on a plate, or chopped veggies and chicken over a bed of spinach – dressing is what brings a zing to any salad.
The great thing about homemade salad dressing is that the ingredients come straight from the kitchen cupboard. Oil, vinegar, mustard and some spices make a good dressing. Additives such as juice, fresh herbs, garlic and plain yogurt can help make a great dressing. Whatever is on hand and lingering in the fridge is game to add to the mixing jar. Season it to taste, mix in what you like and bland salad will be a thing of the past.
Adding homemade salad dressing to your recipe repertoire can also save money. Store bought dressing can impinge on a tight food budget, however, combining versatile kitchen staples from the cabinet is cost effective, makes a great salad dressing and can also be used in every day cooking.
½ cup oil (olive oil, canola oil, etc.)
¼ cup vinegar (red wine vinegar, balsamic vinegar or rice wine vinegar)
1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
1 garlic clove, minced
Salt and pepper to taste
Shake in a jar and toss with any salad.
Sweet additions: Honey, apple juice, mango juice
Freshen it up: Chopped tarragon, rosemary or oregano
Spice it up: cayenne pepper,
adobe adobo sauce
For a creamy element: plain yogurt