General Principles Of Salad Making

Discussion in 'Food & Cooking' started by kokopuffs, Jan 25, 2002.

  1. kokopuffs

    kokopuffs

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    Here's how I go about making a "standard" salad dressing after placing lettuce in a bowl. I first pour in the oil and turn the salad to coat everything. Next, I add the red wine vinegar or a mixture of balsamic and red wine vinegars with s&p along with spices and toss the mixture.

    Doing it that way seems to make for a tastier salad than mixing the dressing separately then pouring it on. Coating the greens first with oil seems to produce a more flavorful salad.

    Any comments?
     
  2. kuan

    kuan Moderator Staff Member

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    Dunno if it's tastier, but it sure is faster and one less thing to wash! I used to yell bloody murder when I saw my staff take short cuts, but now I'm more relaxed. I guess the only thing you give up is the ability to emulsify the dressing. Given that you get the ingredient proportions and amounts correct, I don't see how it could be any worse.

    Kuan
     
  3. kokopuffs

    kokopuffs

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    I watched Julia C make a Caesar dressing that way, where the oil was added to the lettuce first, then tossed to coat the leaves, then the remaining ingredients were added.

    I realize that there is a time and a place to emulsify dressings but dunno' the strategy thereof. Salad is one area remaining to be investigated by me.
     
  4. pongi

    pongi

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    HAHAHA...this is JUST the way Italian housewives have been seasoning their salads for hundreds of years! It's funny to see that in America (the country of calory-bomb dressings) this has become a science!

    Pongi:D :D :D
     
  5. kuan

    kuan Moderator Staff Member

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    Was she making a Julia Caesar salad in the traditional Roman way then? :) :)

    Kuan
     
  6. kokopuffs

    kokopuffs

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    Dunno' about that one, Kuan.

    Pongi:

    It's not becoming a science. But for some of us Americans our mothers work full time and never cooked for us. So I would like to learn the technique/method of dressing salads since mama wasn't around to cater to me.

    No mamones here, OKAY?!?!?
     
  7. pongi

    pongi

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    Kokopuffs,
    if you're another one of those who still believe that Italy is the land of Mamas, you're wrong.

    I work full time, and cook - can't say if I can cook well or not, but I do.

    My mother has been working full time as a doctor for all her life, and she is an excellent cook.

    Most friends of mine work, many of their mothers worked out home, and all of them cook.

    I don't think is a matter of time, but a matter of MIND. We have a strong cooking tradition, and probably healthier nutrition habits. So...we know how to dress salads! :chef:

    And, apart from that...when speaking of "salad making science" I was joking!;)

    Pongi
     
  8. cape chef

    cape chef

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    Take it private guys if you want to do battle.

    Somethings that are old traditions in one country may not be in others. It is almost always better to tossed your greens with your oil and a little kosher salt and milled pepper for two reasons.
    One is that it will taste better and two, things will adhere better to the leaves and be more evenly distrubuted.

    Note, when making a vinaigrette in a bowl or whatever..always add the acid first.
    cc
     
  9. kokopuffs

    kokopuffs

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    CapeChef:

    As far as vinaigrette goes, are you saying to add the acid, then spices/s&p/garlic. Allow to infuse a short while. Then finally blend the mixture with oil before placing salad (veggies and leaves) into the bowl containing the mixture?

    Can someone refer me to a short article I could read on this subject, one that contrasts salad dressings vs vinaigrettes? Procedures? Methods?
     
  10. cape chef

    cape chef

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    Kokopuffs,

    There is a basic chemical reaction that taked place between the acids of the vinegar and the level of alkaline in the oil.
    When I make, lets say a basic vinaigrette I will start with a touch of grain mustard,minced shallots, black pepper and kosher salt, Chopped herbs. As i add the acid (Vinegar) to the mustard (emoulsifier)I whisk to incorporate. Then I slowly drizzel in the oil and whisk, I use 3 to 1 oil over acid. I also recommend not serving your dressings right out of the fridge, This will inhibut there flavor.Let them come to room temp to blossem there nuiances
    cc
     
  11. kokopuffs

    kokopuffs

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    Thanks, CC. When you mention grain mustard I assume something like Gray Poupon Dijon mustard, a whole grain mustard.

    I suppose that I get a little fired up when someone generalizes about those from other countries, especially Americans.
     
  12. adam

    adam

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    I am not sure that I understood your first question. Cape Chef answered it moreover.
    For cabbage sald I suggest to salt your cabbage first and leave it for 15min and then add the dressing.
    I am not sure if you use salt because you follow a healthy diet . I follow your posts :)
     
  13. kokopuffs

    kokopuffs

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    Adam:

    Yes, I certainly use salt in my cooking.

    Salt is healthy, required not only for osmotic balance but also - along with calcium - for muscle contraction and nerve conduction. It's junque food, heavily laden with salt, that gives salt the bad name.

    Chances are that when the physician orders the patient to abstain from salt, that patient's diet includes lots of junque food. I don't mean to bad mouth junque food but...:cool: :cool: :p :cool: :cool: