Great ingredients make for great meals. Whenever you can, use the highest quality supplies for your recipes. The flavor difference will always come through in your finished dish.
If there is an ingredient that you are not familiar with, check our Ingredient section. There are pages and pages of information about the ingredients used in my recipes.
A lot of mixtures in cooking do not combine well. Oil and water are the classic example of this. When making salad dressings oil is combined with vinegar (which is mostly water) by whisking the mixture to form smaller and smaller globules of the oil. The small droplets can then blend with the vinegar. This process is known as emulsification and the result is a creamy dressing. The suspended oil helps to spread the other flavors evenly throughout the mouth. It also helps dressings to cling to salad greens.
Because one goal is to reduce the amount of oil (to reduce the amount of fat), lower fat dressings require a substitute to help create creaminess. In this recipe, honey is used but in sparing amounts because it is also high in calories. Oils balance the acidity of the vinegar and the honey helps by activating the opposing sweet taste buds. Sparing amounts of honey should be used or the dressing will be too sweet.
Maple syrup or corn syrup can produce the same effect as the honey but with a more savory flavor. Each dressing is different but a rule of thumb is to use 1 teaspoon of honey for each two teaspoons of oil.