Chef Peter Sherlock prepares Romaine Salad with Pomegranate, Mint, and Orange Dressing
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We’re going to make pomegranate extract, balsamic, extra virgin olive oil, blood orange, dressing. How’s that sound? Sound good, alright. Now, think about making a dressing, it’s just very simple ratio; any type of vinaigrette that you make, it’s a 3:1 ratio. Three parts oil, 1 part vinegar so we’re going to use balsamic vinegar and the balsamic that we have is actually eight years old. The older the balsamic, the more expensive and the more refined and the more sweet and more okay the balsamic will become. So, we’re using an eight-year old balsamic so let’s do it 3:1 ratio. Three parts, and I cook by—sorry guys, okay. That’s about six ounces, okay. Now, what we’re going to do, we’re going to whisk in some extra virgin olive oil. There’s a difference between extra virgin olive oil and the regular olive oil, right. One is more expensive, one is not. It’s kind of obvious but there’s more to it than that. Extra Virgin Olive oil has more flavor because it’s a ripe, it’s a fruit that’s less ripe and more pungent in flavor that’s put in a centrifuge and the oil’s extracted as compared to an olive oil with the olive fruits on a tree, the sun ripens it and the meat actually grows more and then you put it to the centrifuge. So think about it, olive that’s only a month old compared to an olive that’s three months old on the vine in the sun same climate. One is more pungent, more peppery, more spice and the yellow is more mellow so that’s the difference between extra virgin and plain oil. Now, what we’re going to do, we’re just going to whisk it in, 3:1 ratio so be sort of about six ounces of balsamic. We will need about 18 ounces of extra virgin olive oil, right? Now, it’s crucial when you make a vinaigrette, you always have to stir. You want to create a temporary emulsification, alright, temporary, meaning that’s only going to hold for a certain period of time, that’s intense already, a permanent emulsification when you need and acid like a mustard. You can put a mustard in there? It would actually emulsify and stay great, okay. So, it depends on the application of what kind of dressing that you actually want. If you want to create a nice pattern on a dish, make a loose vinaigrette or a temporary emulsification. If you want to have more of the creamy, richer, all together, you won’t see oil and balsamic vinaigrette on the plate emulsified, okay. Now, as you see, it’s actually becoming thicker. Now, what’s great about making a dressing? It’s all up to you. You can actually play over it the way you want it. If you want to have a strong and spicy, just add those components. If you want it to have it very mild, you can not put it in. Now, let’s talk about pomegranate extract. That’s really good for about now. Try to make sure we emulsify this. Now, pomegranate extract. You always can put it, you never can’t take out, alright. So, in cooking there’s a phrase that I always use, it’s called taste in natural progression of cooking. Taste it in the natural stages. You always going to add enough, you never can take out. If it’s too strong, we add a little bit more of something else that comes in for our flavor so if you taste it as you make it, you can adjust it. You want? Just put it all in as we’re cooking. You can buy infused oils now that have all different sorts of flavors in it. Tonight, we’re going to use a blood orange infused olive oil. Now, how do they do that without making the oil cloudy? Give me a small glass. Think about before when I said we’re going to put the olives into a centrifuge? You actually spin out the oil like it was spinning. Now, think about that concept. When you put the actual rind of the fruit into that centrifuge as you spin it, what’s going to be extracted naturally just the oil, no bitterness from the rind. So, I prefer to use a clear oil that’s infused the right way. Now, how much do you actually put in? You have to taste it as you’re actually making it, okay. I use kosher salt because it’s a lesser fine salt i
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