I am a married woman! I also work at a new job (banquet chef at a Portland brewery) and live at a new address. The last few months involved insane amounts of planning, packing, lifting, running, stressing, worrying and just plain ol’ craziness. Very, very glad only memories remain from that period of my life. Still, I could have fit in time for blogging if I really tried, but the real reason I slacked so much on my online recipe sharing: I finally felt happy. Sounds strange, right? Honestly, I started blogging because I needed something to feel good about. The same routine every day, the same people driving me insane, the lack of creative control at my job, it all put so much pressure on me that I needed an escape, any escape, to feel in control again. I love my job so much now; I no longer get stress headaches or scream at my fiancé (now husband!) just to release the rage. I actually get to make food that I like, I write my own recipes and menus. Love, love, love it. I started focusing more on creating recipes for my new banquet menu at work, and still continue to work on that gigantic project. Never-ending, but in a really great way. Finally, my little sister/roommate started pestering me to jump back into blogging (I think mostly to test her title of official taste tester of all meat-free items) and here I am, back at the keyboard again. Now that I am here, I wonder why I ever stopped. Oh yes, that’s right. I need to measure stuff when I cook if I want to post the recipe. Not really my thing. I prefer to just throw things together and taste test as I go. That method doesn’t translate well for those who haven’t spent years in a professional kitchen, however. Oh well, I guess I will dust off the measuring cups and spoons shoved in the back of my kitchen drawers. Here is a recipe for a vinaigrette that my husband made for a salad we served to some friends, and it was such a hit, they all asked for the recipe. So, we made it again, and measured the ingredients this time. We then served it to my family, and even my spice-hating mom fell in love. She said she will never buy bottled dressing again!
So simple to make, and it lasts for a long time in the refrigerator if you want to make a large batch. You can also make this in a blender, just add all the ingredients except the oil, blend well, and then slowly drizzle in the oil with the motor running. I use vegetable oil, I find that olive oil can get bitter when blended too much, and just over powers all the other flavors. I skipped the detail cutting on this batch by using the blender, as you can tell if you look at the picture!
1 Tbsp Dijon mustard
1/2 cup cider vinegar
1 small jalapeño, seeded and minced
1/2 tsp minced garlic
1/2 tsp black pepper
salt to taste
1 cup oil (vegetable works fine, or plain olive oil, not extra virgin though, too strong)
Combine all ingredients except oil in a bowl. Whisk the oil in slowly, until completely combined.