Garlic-Parmesan Salad Dressing

On our recent trip to Eureka Springs, Jess and I fell in love with the salad dressing at Local Flavor Cafe, a cool, rich blend of garlic and Parmesan cheese.  When we got home, I decided to try and make my own.  The recipe here doesn’t taste exactly like Local Flavor’s dressing, but it comes pretty close and we think it’s delicious.  It’s a good topping for green salad, of course, but it also makes a great pasta salad or vegetable dip, too.  The method of making it is very simple if you’ve got a blender, and it keeps for a week or so in the refrigerator.  Here’s what you’ll need:

Garlic-Parmesan Dressing

  • 1 teaspoon peppercorns, coarsely ground
  • 1/2 cup champagne vinegar
  • 1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese
  • 1 tablespoon honey
  • 1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
  • 1 medium clove of garlic, minced (or 1/2 teaspoon pre-minced)
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1 cup canola oil
  • 1/4 cup buttermilk
  • 1/4 cup sour cream

Combine the salt, pepper, vinegar, cheese, honey, mustard, and garlic in a blender until well mixed.  Remove the small cap in the center of the blender lid, and while running the blender on low, add your oil in a slow, steady stream.  It’s important to add the oil slowly because we’re going for an emulsion here – in addition to adding flavor, the honey and mustard serve to help this process along.  When all the oil has been incorporated, pour your emulsion into a bowl and whisk in the buttermilk and sour cream. Adjust your salt as needed.  Chill for an hour or so before serving.  For a thinner dressing, reduce the amount of sour cream used (or eliminate altogether), and add a bit more if you’d like a thicker result. Enjoy!

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