2/21/2014

Roasted Garlic and Shallot Dressing

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Although I didn't post this past Sunday, we did enjoy a scrumptious Sunday dinner with a menu similar to this one.  I had an extra roasted garlic head that needed to find a home and since a simple green salad was on the dinner menu this week (it accompanied a roasted vegetable omelet), I thought I would pull out this recipe.

If your teenage children linger at the dinner table picking greens out of the salad bowl with their fingers after they have already had one helping of salad (um hello?-- there is something called a fork right there), you know you have a winner on your hands.  I even got a "wow, this is so good!" several times.

Roasting the garlic and shallots brings out the sweetness and deepens the flavor (but you still might want to have a breath mint or chew a piece of gum after your meal).  I use equal parts lemon juice and champagne vinegar to provide a clean acidity.  When considering which oil to use in dressings, I usually use a neutral oil, such as Canola or Safflower.  I adore the fruity and sometimes peppery flavor of a good extra virgin olive oil, but in emulsified dressings and even in some vinaigrettes I feel that it can overpower the rest of the ingredients.  I prefer to save the good stuff for a simple drizzle on salads or vegetables.

Not only does this dressing pack a punch of flavor, it is quite versatile. It is an obvious choice for a simple mixed green salad (don't forget the croutons) and it stands up well to hearty greens like Romaine or kale.  It is also excellent drizzled over grilled and/or roasted vegetables and potatoes.  Whenever make it, I always add in a little chopped fresh parsley.  However, if I am using it for vegetables or potatoes, I sometimes add fresh thyme or rosemary.  Those flavors mingle nicely.  But as I have said before, "make it for you, make it your own".

Printable Recipe

Roasted Garlic and Shallot Dressing
makes about 3/4 cup

1 head of garlic, cut in half
1 medium shallot, loose papery peel removed
1 Tablespoon olive oil
1 1/2 Tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice
1 1/2 Tablespoons champagne vinegar
1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
1 Tablespoon minced fresh flat-leaf parsley
1/2 teaspoon minced fresh thyme leaves (optional)
6 Tablespoons neutral oil, like Canola or Safflower, divided
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste

Preheat the oven to 400º F.  Place the garlic and shallot on a piece of heavy duty aluminum foil and drizzle with the olive oil.  Wrap and seal tightly.  Roast until soft and golden brown, about 45-60 minutes.  Remove from the oven and allow to cool until able to handle.

When cool enough to handle, squeeze the garlic and shallots from their peels into a blender.  Add the lemon juice, vinegar, Dijon, and 2 tablespoons of the neutral oil and blend until smooth.  With the motor running, slowly pour in the remaining 4 tablespoons of oil and blend until emulsified.  Add the parsley and thyme (if using) and pulse to combine.  Season to taste with kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper.  Use immediately or cover and refrigerate.  Enjoy!

Source: Adapted from The Joy of Cooking, 1997



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