The basic vinaigrette is prepared using only vinegar, oil, salt, and pepper. For the variations suggested, prepare first the basic vinaigrette, mixing the other ingredients later.
- Pour the vinegar into a small bowl.
- Add salt, sugar, and pepper. Mix, the sugar and salt will start dissolving.
- Add the oil and whisk until the mixture is emulsified.
Flavor improves if chilled for a couple of hours.
The flavor changes drastically if you use a specialty vinegar. Try to prepare a basic vinaigrette using red wine vinegar, balsamic vinegar, cider vinegar, rice vinegar or herb flavored vinegar.
The vinaigrette will keep in the fridge for up to a week so it is easy to prepare some extra to use two or three days later.
For a milder taste, substitute half the vinegar with water.
Mix in 1 teaspoon of prepared mustard or a pinch of mustard powder.
A dash of hot sauce, like Tabasco.
2 tsp chopped fresh aromatic herbs, like parsley, chives, tarragon, basil, chervil.
1 tsp dried herbs, like basil or marjoram.
1/2 tsp crushed garlic.
1/2 hard boiled egg, yolk crushed and mixed into the dressing, egg white chopped.
Double the recipe for basic vinaigrette and add 2 tbs chopped onion, 1 tbs chopped fresh parsley, 2 tbs finely diced green pepper.