Monday, October 1, 2012

More Salads For Dinner and a 1926 Recipe For French Dressing

Since I've been working so much lately and my usual shift has me ending my work at around 6-7pm I'm really not in the mood to go home and cook dinner.  So most days when I'm scheduled like this I'm satisfied to make a salad with some leftover chicken on it or whatever I happen to have on hand.  The prep is easy, I get to try one of the numerous lettuce mixes we sell at work along with some nice heirloom tomatoes and overall the meal is not too heavy to digest before bedtime.  One thing that I needed to do though was lighten up the salad dressings that I used.  We had been in a rut with heavy creamy dressing like ranch or blue cheese, great tasting but too many calories and too bloating before having to go to sleep.

Enter the ad above, apparently salad was what's for dinner back in the 20's as well.  Reminds me of the Eddie Cantor song "My Wife Is On a Diet" (see below article).  I had found ad quite some time ago, and I liked it not only for the artwork but because it had a recipe for french dressing on it.  This is not the thick red stuff masquerading as french dressing that you find on store shelves today, but the light vinaigrette version that was its noble ancestor.  Indeed, the preference in salad dressings back in the vintage era was for vinaigrette dressings because they did not detract too much from the flavor of the salad itself.  Keep in mind that if you wash your greens before creating your salad, you will need to dry them thoroughly in a salad spinner or place in a towel and shake over the sink vigorously.  I'm glad I took a picture of the dressing in the bowl as it simply melds with the salad and disappears.

1920's French Dressing Recipe

1/2 tsp Salt
1 tsp Sugar
1/8 tsp Paprika
1/4C Oil of Choice (see note)
3T Lemon Juice or Vinegar

Place all ingredients in a bowl and whisk until well blended, about 2-3 minutes.  Good for 2 main dish salads or 3-4 Side Salads with a meal.

note: I used Olive Oil in my dressing and some vintage french dressing recipes call for it, this particular one calls for corn oil but I do not recommend its use as all corn oil is made from GMO corn (unless specifically marked as organic). I also used Braggs Apple Cider Vinegar, but I have used lemon juice as well.  The former makes for a less tart dressing than the use of the latter.

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