By now, if you’ve been reading this blog, you realize that I have thrown out all of the store made salad dressings that used to line my refrigerator door. The ranch is gone, the Italian dressing has been tossed, my beloved blue cheese is no longer, and even our store bought Caesar has been dethroned.
All of those store bought salad dressings have ingredients that have become unacceptable in our house, usually vegetable oil or Canola oil. But we don’t do Canola oil here, so I found myself in need of a few new recipes of homemade salad dressings.
I believe I have already covered a homemade ranch dressing, and will likely revisit that recipe as my dietary needs and wants grow. But for today, I wanted to share my newest most favorite dressing, an apple cider vinegar dressing that is super easy to make, is quite tasty, and takes only about 5 minutes to put together!
If I can count properly, I think there are only 7 ingredients in this dressing, , including the three spices I use, so there really aren’t too many options to consider when putting this apple cider vinegar dressing together.
When I can, I buy all of my spices organic, and the same with mustard, but beyond that, I don’t give too much thought to those ingredients.
That leaves only three ingredients to worry about, the olive oil, avocado oil and the apple cider vinegar. It turns out that worrying about your olive oil may be something you need to spend a little time practicing. Scores of recent articles have been pointing out that much of the extra virgin olive oil market is being filled with fraudulent olive oil!
Apparently a shocking percentage of olive oil on your store’s shelves have likely been mixed with other lesser oils, either low quality olive oil, or even worse, chemically treated high PUFA oxidized vegetable oils!
Here’s an interesting article detailing a few methods to try and ensure your olive oil is actually what you think it is, but basically your best bet is to be best buds with someone who grows olives and make olive oil. Outside of that, you are taking a shot in the dark and trying your best to make sure you get the real deal, and not some imitation oil that is actually harmful to your health.
Ok, after that olive oil downer, let’s discuss apple cider vinegar! Once you start getting interested in “real foods” and stop buying so much packaged food, you will no doubt start to run into people, either online or in real life, proclaiming the virtues of apple cider vinegar.
No, I’m not talking about the clear distilled vinegar you see in most groceries, I’m talking about the murky, dirty looking, apple cider vinegar that hasn’t been distilled or filtered, and actually contains all sorts of healthy bacteria, enzymes and minerals.
According to some of the articles I have read, apple cider vinegar can fight acid reflux and heartburn, help cure dandruff and athlete’s foot, as well as lower blood pressure. Also, some people think it can help with digestive issues, cure bad breath and all sorts of other medical claims, such as fighting diabetes, heart disease and obesity.
I have not read a research paper, or a summary, that backs these claims up, but am still inclined to believe that there might be a few health benefits to be had by consuming a bit more apple cider vinegar and probably very little downside.
Just remember, if you are going to buy apple cider vinegar, either for salad dressing, or just to drink straight, make sure to get an organic, unfiltered, and unpasteurized vinegar that still has the “mother” in it, that cloudy essence in the vinegar that is the source of all the purported goodness. Bragg apple cider vinegar seems to be the top choice among many food bloggers.
And lastly, a more recent addition to this recipe, avocado oil. There really isn’t too much to think about once you decide to include this ingredient in your salad dressing. I try to get an organic brand when possible, but if you buy straight up 100% avocado oil, then you know you what you are getting, a healthy fat that is actually quite nutritious and beneficial!
Apple Cider Vinegar Dressing
- 100 ml apple cider vinegar
- 150 ml avocado oil
- 1 teaspoon garlic powder
- 1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
- 1 teaspoon sea salt
- 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
- 150 ml olive oil
- Place all of your ingredients, except for the olive oil, in a tall measuring cup
- Using an immersion blender blend of all the ingredients together
- Add about 150 ml or enough olive oil to bring entire mixture to 400 ml and then hand whisk together
The olive oil fraud issue is indeed rampant. The Olive Oil study referenced in post showed that the California olive oils are a good choice. McEvoy, Corto, and California Olive Ranch are all legit and they have a wide range of varieties, tastes, and price points.
Buy domestic and you’re helping the US economy AND giving your family quality food. That’s a simple solution I can live with.
home made apple cider vinegar is very easy to make if you can source some pure raw unadulterated apple cider fresh from the press. I just put it into a clean glass gallon jar (pickle jar from my local restaurant) with a clean cloth cover fastened with a couple rubber bands. Let it sit for several months until it tastes as sour as you like. If you have a mother, go ahead and put it in. It will just jump start the process, but it is not necessary. The cider will first ferment and become slightly alcoholic, then will slowly become more acidic until you have vinegar. Because the exact acid content is not known, it should not be used for preserving or pickling other foods, but it is absolutely WONDERFUL for salad dressings and cooking. The longer is sits, the more acid it becomes as the water content evaporates off. Once it is to your liking, you can bottle it into glass containers with a screw lid.