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Wednesday, June 13, 2012

Red Wine Vinegar and Olive Oil Vinaigrette

For health reasons, I tend to avoid Soy and Canola, so imagine my frustration when searching for a salad dressing - even organic one - that DOESN'T contain either. We had one that we loved by Seeds of Change, their Greek Feta Vinaigrette (see) but ALL the stores around here stopped carrying it.

For a while, I simply made ranch dressing at home by hand, but occasionally, we just want some variety, you know? One day, we found this Red Wine Vinegar and Olive Oil Vinaigrette by Marzetti. The first dressing we love - which is organic - tended to cost almost 6.00  a 12 oz bottle, and the second - non-organic - costs around 4.00 a 12 oz bottle.

This is really far too expensive for us, especially for something that's not organic, SO I decided to make our own Vinaigrette. The ingredients on the bottle - minus the preservatives and colorings - were actually pretty simple. Water, Red Wine Vinegar, Olive Oil, Red Wine, and Garlic juice. Plus salt sugar and some unknown seasonings - which is usually code for MSG.

At the store, I bought Organic Olive Oil for 4.50 for a 16 oz bottle; Red Cooking Wine - which there really ISN'T an organic version anywhere that I've seen - also for about 4.50 for 16 oz; and Garlic flavored Red Wine Vinegar for about 4.50 for 12 oz. I actually CAN find Organic Garlic flavored Red Wine Vinegar for about 6.00 a bottle for 12 oz :-) but I decided to save some money while I experiment, lol!

Between the three bottles, I literally had all the ingredients listed on the Marzetti bottle, even some of the preservatives (grr), but none of the sugar or mystery seasonings (yea!), so I decided I was good to go :-)

Taking an empty dressing bottle, and a brand new one (we bought one to use as a taste comparison and template) I poured about 2 oz of the cooking wine, 6 oz of the vinegar, 1-2 oz of water, and 2 oz of the olive oil. (I poured without measuring, so I am probably off on all the measurements by a little, but my motto is make it to taste, so you can start with my suggestions and tweak til it's good for you :-) ) Then, I shook it up and tasted it. It was almost exactly the same flavor as the official brand but a little less sweet. I called in hubby to taste it, and asked him if he could live with it. His response?

"Tastes good!"

YEA!!! That means I was successful at making our own homemade Vinaigrette!!!

Now, the way I guesstimate it, I'll probably need about 2 bottles of Garlic Red Wine Vinegar before I use up the Olive Oil and Red Cooking Wine. So, all told, I'll end up spending about 20.00 (overestimate) for 8 makings of vinaigrette. Approximately 20/8=2.50 per 12 oz of dressing, and if I switch to the organic version, I'll be spending about 22.00 for 8 makings. 22/8=2.75 per 12 oz dressing. Now THAT'S what I'm talking about!!!

Go me, go me, go me (heeheehee...)

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