I have never purchased a vinaigrette or salad dressing. And nobody else needs to, either. They’re just so easy to make from scratch!
If you have a favorite you always purchase, just read the ingredients on the bottle, and use those ingredients to make your own! It’s pretty incredible how much less expensive dressings are when made at home… Plus, you’re spared the preserving chemicals!!!
During the fall-winter months, I like deep-flavored and earthy dressings, like this vinaigrette based on beet and apple juices. I never throw beet juice away – mostly because I love this vinaigrette. (I collect it year round because I love sliced beets in salads!)
During these months, I also have apple juice or cider around. Beets and apples are a perfect flavor combination. So here’s what I did:
Juice from 1 – 15 ounce can of sliced beets, strained
1/4 cup apple juice or cider
1/3 cup apple cider vinegar
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil
Reduce the beet and apple juices in a small saucepan until a thick syrup has formed. Do not leave the kitchen while you’re doing this. It can happen quickly!
Let cool, then add the remaining ingredients and stir until the salt has dissolved. Using a funnel, pour the dressing into a serving carafe and store in the fridge. Let warm up before using.
This earthy vinaigrette is really good on a chopped salad with endives, pear, and mozzarella, or a simple garden salad with carrots, tomatoes, and cucumbers. It also pairs beautifully with both bleu cheese and goat cheese.
note: You can sweeten the flavor if you like, with Boiled Cider, or add a little balsamic vinegar. (Boiled cider is actually a product you can purchase – it is simple reduced apple cider.)