Pre-children, I never dreamt of purchasing pre-made salad dressing. Pretty sure I didn’t buy a bottle for probably 15 years. Then, along came baby number two. As simple as it is to whip up a vinaigrette, somehow those few minutes evaporated from my day. It was one more thing to do, and one more dish to wash. I won’t tell you how many nights a bagged, pre-made salad has accompanied our dinners in the last year. (There are 365 days in the year, so that should give you a pretty good idea.) Then, thumbing through Instagram, I stumbled upon a recipe for this simple, classic French Vinaigrette via @cooksatelier. I decided to just shake up all the ingredients in a good old mason jar. There is a time and place for slowly whisking in olive oil, drop by ever loving drop, for a perfectly emulsified vinaigrette. However, Wednesday at 6pm in my house is not it. I’m happy to share the mason jar method worked just fine.
Last fall, hubby and I (giant hat tip to the grandparents) ran off to the South of France for a whole week. We celebrated our 10th wedding anniversary and my 40th birthday eating and drinking our way through Provence.
Caught in a drizzle exploring this fairy tale hilltop village, we ducked into a charming little bistro. We snagged the very last table and enjoyed the coziest meal of roast guinea fowl accompanied by the most delightful fresh green salad and a crisp French white. Everywhere you went, regardless of your order, there was a green salad. So what, right? I’ll tell you what. Contrary to most American menus, where the side salad is practically an afterthought, an obligatory pop of green on the plate- this could have stood on its own. The greens were probably picked less than 48 hours prior and they were all PERFECTLY dressed with this zippy little vinaigrette.
Here is what you need to make the exact same thing. No whisk required.
Simple ingredient list
- Sherry Vinegar (can sub white or red wine vinegar)
- Good Quality olive oil
- Dijon Mustard
- Kosher Salt
- Fresh ground pepper
I like to grate my shallot on a microplane- simply because it takes less time. (Also, no knife skills required.) But if you don’t have a microplane, you can simply mince the shallot.
We’ve been enjoying this on arugula, as it’s prolific in our winter garden, with toasted pine nuts and a little goat cheese. But this classic french vinaigrette would be delicious on pretty much any green salad. And it’ll keep in the fridge for about 10 days, so as it’s already there, just waiting for me- we’ve gone a whole week without a bag salad in sight.
And hey- as a card carrying member of the Busy Working Mamas of the World Club, I am in full support of meal helpers- with pre made salads at the top of the the list. But this was an easy way to treat us to a super flavorful (easy) salad. Enjoy!