Mothers Day Gift, a cruet that pleases everyone. Making your own home dressing is a great skill to have.
You can make your own vinaigrette out of every day items in your pantry. More importantly, it is much more economical that constantly buying bottled dressings.
When making a vinaigrette, you will always mix 3 parts olive oil to 1 part vinegar. However, if you are substituting a lesser amount of lemon juice for the vinegar, you will have to adjust your level of olive oil at the same ratio. Since you are going to be tasting the olive oil directly, you will want to make sure you use the best available.
Making vinaigrette is a two handed job – one to whisk and one to add the oil.
During the process, you need to make sure that the bowl stays stationary. You can either used a towel (moisten it and wrap it around perimeter of bowl) or if you have one, a rubber bottomed bowl. You will need something that has traction on the counter.
The first thing you are going to do is add a bit of salt to the vinegar and let it dissolve. You can add it later but vinegar allows the salt to dissolve more readily that it will once you have added the oil. Put in a dollop of Dijon, this will serve as your emulsifier for the oil and vinegar. Whisk until mustard is combined then you will gradually fold in the olive oil, pouring it in a slow steady stream as you constantly whisk. Continue the process until the dressing has emulsified completely. Taste, if you wish you may add additional salt and pepper at this time to get the proper flavor. Read more recipes.
This is only a basic vinaigrette, you can play with it by using different infused oils or flavored vinegars (i.e. champagne, cider)
You can also add things like citrus, herbs, garlic and shallots. This dressing can be used for pasta salad, drizzled over veggies, tossed with your greens or as a marinade for meats and fish.
Tags Oil and Vinegar, Oil and Vinegar Recipes
Balsalmic Vinegar Gift Cruet for every gift occasion. The process of making Balsamic vinegar begins when the grapes are absolutely ripe,
they are harvested and then they are crushed and then pressed into a juice called “mosto”. At times if the sugar levels in the grapes are too low, the grapes are further ripened in a wooden box left in the sun for some time before crushing. The “must” is then cooked in open pots over a direct flame and allowed to simmer for 24 to 30 hours, until it becomes an intensely sweet concentrate, reduced in volume by one half or more. While it simmers, the sugars of the grapes caramelize slightly, giving the liquid an amber hue. This unfermented juice, called mosto cotto, is then cooled, allowed to settle, and, in accordance with the traditional methods, transferred to a “batteria,” which is a set of progressively smaller wooden barrels. These barrels are then stored in vinegar attics, called “acetaie” generally on the top floor of the house, to ferment, evaporate, and age over a minimum of 12 years and often decades. By this time it acquires a complex character — aromatic, intensely sweet and syrupy texture.http://www.cruets.com/Scripts/prodView.asp?idProduct=302
Although there is no fixed number of barrels required for a batteria, but a minimum of three are needed for the “must” concentration to undergo the processes that give balsamic vinegar
its complex characteristics: transformation, maturation, and aging. The barrels, ranging in capacity from 10 liters to 100 liters, are fashioned from hard and soft woods such as ash, oak, chestnut, cherry, mulberry, and juniper. The barrels impart flavor and color to the concentrate, resulting in giving the vinegar a multilayered character. The choice of the variety of woods and their respective positions in the series is a matter of personal preference of the producers. There could any number of variations in this. The choices are typically dictated by personal preference and economic viability, as well as the density of the wood, porosity, flavor, and the availability. More vinaigrette recipes.
Some producers prefer to use stronger, more aromatic woods for the small casks at the end of the series to impart a sharper finishing character to the vinegar in the final stages. Others favor the more neutral woods, which allow the vinegar to mellow. All barrels are highly porous and have large square bungholes covered by a cotton cloth to allow maximum exposure to air and assist oxidation and evaporation.
The grape cruet is two vessels in one. Olive Oil can be added to the second compartment.
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