yes, dressing. I'm big on sauces and toppings really "making" a meal, esp. in their propensity to make a dull or bland item delicious. I warn you though, I like weird and verrrrry tasty stuff.
Here's a rough 'template' for a vinagrette dressing and some successful experiments I've had with it.
2-3 parts vinegar or booze (I'll explain...)
1 part water
4/5 parts oil
spices to taste
the reason I fudge a little on the measurements is that some sauces/dishes are better if they're a lil less/more oily or "vinegary".
1. mixture of balsamic and red wine vinegar, olive oil, 2 tsp. finely grated podano/parmesan cheese, sage, basil, oregano, chives, black pepper. This'un is great on salads, but please do not disgrace it by putting it on that flavorless overpopular crud called iceberg lettuce. It excels on radicchio and wild green (dandelion leaves, etc.)
2. tequila, corn oil, cilantro, black pepper, jalapeno powder, sage, coriander. Good as a mix in taco salads, also a heckuva marinade or even a topping for Mex-style chicken dishes.
If you don't want the al-kee-hawl, boil the tequila for a while. Good tequila doesnt lose much taste IMHO; lots of the alcohol will evaporate.
3. Nakano seasoned rice (sake) vinegar, sesame oil mixed with Mongolian "fire" oil and a little olive oil, wasabi, black pepper, sea salt and finely ground seaweed and/or bonito flakes. Yes this one tastes weird to lots of folks....but drizzled on sticky white rice it's a great filler for Asian meals, an accompaniment to sushi and other Japanese dishes, and something very different for grilled seafood (it happens to kick much butt on grilled shark).
Cooking is like dang near everything else in life...experiment, safely, and you'll find lots of stuff that works just fine and few things that are outta this world. Dad taught me how to woodwork and shoot, and I was smart enough to listen to Mom about cooking...although she HATES most of the stuff I eat nowadays ;f
A tasty and quick dressing is Ranch dressing with blue cheese broken up into it. Tasty and quick.
Here is another that is really good over cucumber salad. I also use it as a dipping sauce for seared tuna steaks.
Mix wasabi into Ranch dressing. Add wasabi to your taste. Start with a small amount and slowly increase the amount of wasabi until you like it.
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