Tuesday, June 25, 2013

.:DIY salad dressing:.

looking for an inexpensive way and quick way to make your own salad dressing? i sure am and i think i may have found it! let me just start by saying that ever since i took my Nutrition course last Fall, i have been on the search for the PERFECT salad dressing (but i wasn't willing to pay over $10 for it). almost all salad dressings contain some form of sugar, regardless of the fancy way they say it. they also contain vegetable oil, canola oil or any other type of hydrogenated oil that you do NOT want to put in your body! think of it this way - how much processing do you think corn had to go through to make it an oil? gross. also, hydrogenated oils causes inflammation in your body - i know inflammation occurs in more parts of your body than your joints, but when i think inflammation, i think of my knees and since they are almost ALWAYS swollen anyway, i don't need any more, thanks, but no thanks!

so, since i eat a salad almost every day for lunch, here is my solution to cheap and easy dressings.

first one: olive oil and balsamic vinegar - that's it! how easy is that? ok, this may not be an earth shattering discovery, but i will admit, i found myself looking for that fancy restaurant dressing taste in a bottle when i could easily just put the 2 together on my own! if you have read my blog before this, it won't come as a surprise to you, but i don't measure out the ratio - most of the time i do either 1/2 and 1/2 or a little more balsamic vinegar since it has more flavor than olive oil, but that's my preference.

here is one that is a little more fancy and it has become my new favorite "everyday dressing":

everyday dressing:.
>> 1/3 cup olive oil - extra virgin or whatever you prefer
>> 2 tbs apple cider vinegar (you can use red wine vinegar, but apple cider vinegar is SUPER good for digestion!)
>> 2 tbs honey - i used raw honey
>> 1/2 tbs Dijon mustard
>> 1/2 tbs tamari sauce (tamari sauce is basically the vegan version of soy sauce, so soy sauce can EASILY be used as a substitute)
>> 1 tbs sesame seeds - feel free to be liberal with these babies
>> 1 clove of garlic, minced - you can grate it if you want to be fancy
>> 1 small white onion, minced - i used a bulb of a green onion that i had from our CSA drop-off, i didn't know what else to do with it and we don't regularly keep onions around the house
>> dash of salt and pepper

whisk together and it can be kept in the fridge up to 1 week. if you are a fan of poppy seeds, they would go great in the recipe as well - again, we don't regularly keep poppy seeds around the house (maybe i will throw in chia seeds next time!). this recipe is great and literally takes 5 minutes to throw together - let's be serious, i eyeballed just about everything because we watched one too many episodes of The Office and i was anxious for some shut-eye.

why this dressing is so awesome:.

1:. it doesn't have that 'tart' taste that balsalmic vinegar has and some days, that seems to just hurt to my mouth (probably weird, i know, go ahead and judge me). it is very basic tasting and it won't overpower the vegetables in your salad - i had radish, avocado, cucumber, tomato, sunflower seeds, arugula and kale in my salad today and it complimented everything really well!

2:. olive oil - i wish people knew how awesome olive oil is and how to properly use it. olive oil is a GREAT source of healthy fat, but it should NOT be used in high heats. when you use olive oil in high heat, it denatures the chemistry of the olive oil making it comparable to a vegetable oil (think: inflammation, yikes!). using olive oil as a salad dressing is a good way to get sneak that fat into your diet. it also is great for helping your body absorb and digest all those awesome vegetables.

3:. sesame seeds - i never really know how or where to sneak these powerful seeds in to my diet, but voila! among other awesome things, sesame seeds are full of zinc which is great for memory (and i need all the help i can get with my memory).

4:. apple cider vinegar - if you haven't heard about the benefits of ACV yet, i am sure you will soon. ACV is great supporter of digestion. many nutritionists recommend taking a shot of ACV before every meal to help support the digestion process.

5:. the best thing about this recipe is that once you have all of the ingredients, you can make several batches of it before running out!

try it out and let me know what you think!

always striving for more,
dee b.