Eastside Road, December 20, 2014—SINCE TONIGHT'S DINNER is a repeat of the soup from a couple of days ago, and since it was followed as so many of our dinners are by the tossed green salad, I thought I'd just remind you, as if you wanted the reminder, how I go about making my vinaigrette:
|Smash a clove of garlic with the right amount of salt.|
We use good salt from the Ile de Ré. The right amount will make a nice creamy paste.
Yes, that's a bit of the green shoot in there — I try to avoid them; some people find them bitter.
|Add the right amount of olive oil; certainly enough to cover the garlic.|
Let this stand while you eat your dinner.
|When you're ready to serve the salad, add the right amount of vinegar. Most vinaigrette recipes specify a ratio of vinegar to oil, but I think the proportion varies depending on the strength and acidity of each component. Experiment.|
|Using the fork you smashed the garlic with, emulsify the vinaigrette. I simply whisk the fork back and forth horizontally, always leaving the tines under the surface. You don't want air in the vinaigrette, just the four sacred ingredients: garlic, salt, oil, vinegar.|
(Of course you can substitute lemon juice for vinegar.)
|Finally, add the greens and croutons (if you're using them) to the bowl and toss the salad, using your hands if no one's looking, or two forks if you're squeamish.|
I can't eat salad without a slice of bread.
Water, not wine, with salad!