Saturday, April 10, 2010
Mache Salad with Cilantro Ginger Vinaigrette
Awhile back, I bought a cookbook that was completely dedicated to salad dressings. I had good intentions for that book, I really did. I was probably thinking that I was going to make every salad dressing and eat a lot of salad, but I got sidetracked somewhere along the way. It's hard to say. When it comes to food and cookbooks, I tend to be a little noncommittal.
Hungry for salad, I located that salad dressing cookbook, dusted it off and got creative. I had some Mache, or Lamb's Lettuce, in the refrigerator as well as a bunch of cilantro, a good-sized chunk of ginger, and some fresh-squeezed lime juice left over from my lime pudding cakes. I spotted this recipe for Cilantro Ginger Vinaigrette and put all of those leftover ingredients to good use in this recipe for salad dressing.
Cilantro Ginger Vinaigrette
Adapted from Salad Dressings for every Occasion by Nathan Hyam
1/2 cup chopped cilantro leaves
1 Tbsp. minced fresh ginger
1 Tbsp. sesame oil (I would use half of this amount)
3/4 cup olive oil
1 Tbsp. rice vinegar
3 Tbsp. lime juice
2 Teaspoons liquid honey
sea salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
In a small bowl, whisk all the ingredients together. This can be made up to 2 hours in advance. Refrigerate until needed.
Notes/Results: I really liked the dressing, but felt the sesame oil was a little overpowering. I wasn't really able to taste the cilantro, the lime juice or the honey. Next time, I think I might reduce the sesame oil down from 1 tablespoon to 1 teaspoon. I really enjoyed the dressing, but felt like they should have named it Sesame Vinaigrette instead of Cilantro Ginger Vinaigrette since the focus was more on sesame and less on the cilantro or ginger. I made a salad using the Mache, thinly sliced chicken, grated carrot and crunchy peanuts. It made a very satisfying lunch with lots of flavor and texture.
I am submitting this Mache Salad with Cilantro Ginger Vinaigrette to my friend Deb at Kahakai Kitchen for her Souper Sundays roundup. Every Sunday, Deb hosts a roundup of delicious soups, sammies, and salads. Head on over there for some tasty inspiration.
Making my own salad dressing isn't something that I do too often, but I think that is going to change. I really enjoyed picking a salad dressing and customizing the salad fixings to go with the dressing. Salads have so much potential, don't you think?