Jalapeno Lime Vinaigrette
Mess Level: Low
Yield: 4 Servings
Prep Time: 5 min
Cook Time: None
- 1 Jalapeno
- ½ Head Cilantro
- 1 Lime
- 1-2 Tablespoons Red Wine Vinegar
- 1 ½ Tablespoons Honey
- 1 teaspoon Cumin
- ½ teaspoon Garlic Powder
- ¾ Cup Grapeseed Oil
- Chop up the jalapeno and remove the seeds and membranes if you want it less hot.
- Twist the stems off the cilantro leaves and add the leaves to the blender with the jalapeno.
- Add the remaining ingredients except for the oil, adding salt and pepper to taste.
- Turn the blender on and slowly add the oil in a steady stream until emulsified. Taste with a piece of lettuce or a vegetable and adjust with more acid, sweetener, oil or spices as needed. Enjoy!
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What is emulsified?
- It's pretty much magic!
It’s when two liquids that would normally separate becoming one.
Why do I add the oil at the very end?
- Slow and steady...
Adding the oil slowly while the blender is going allows the acid, oil and water from the jalapeno and cilantro leaves to become emulsified. Water and oil tend to separate but when you bind them slowly, the dressing will stay emulsified for longer.
How can I change the heat level?
- The only thing that stays the same is change...
You can leave out the jalapeno or add less for a milder dressing. For a spicier dressing add more jalapeno or use a serrano pepper.
How long will the dressing keep for?
- It's a short but glorious life...
Not more than a few days because the herb leaves will start to decay.
Why does tasting the dressing with a vegetable help?
- It's all about balance...
Because you’re tasting what the finished product will be like. Odds are you aren’t going to eat the dressing by itself. The dressing may not need anything when tasted with a vegetable, whereas by itself it might not be well rounded.
Ramblings of a Line Cook
Most vinaigrettes will have you combine one part acid with two parts oil and then flavor as you’d like. Oil and vinegar can be great but this combo can also produce a really bitter dressing, especially if you’re using a strongly flavored olive oil.
My secret fix to this is honey! And from there you can go wild. I decided to blend a jalapeno into this dressing as well as some cumin, making this the perfect dressing to top a taco salad or any southwest themed dishes.
But the big thing with making vinaigrettes is you have to taste and adjust. My perfect vinaigrette might not be yours and learning to taste what’s missing will make you a better cook than any cookbook, youtube channel or food network show out there. So how do you accomplish this? Check out Managing Your Flavor Profiles. But the biggest thing that will help you is doing it several times yourself, even if it doesn’t come out the first time. So give this puppy a try and comment with any vinaigrette questions!