Year after year, Xavier’s Vinaigrette has been the number one recipe request from our groups. And, you need to know that getting it to taste in the USA like it does when you are sitting in the South of France has not been easy. For one thing, ‘the Frenchman’ has his own red wine vinegar barrel. This vinegar is softer, more flavorful than most anything one can purchase. Second, even the lemons seem not to be as acidic. Third, he uses almond butter made from blanched almonds and this has been hard to find. Everything USA includes the skins. And fourth, he is always doing something just a bit different. Now that I have made all these excuses, I will tell you that if you do this as the recipe is written, you will find success. You may want to tweek a bit but your base is going to be exactly what you are expecting.
- 1 1/4 CUP LEMON JUICE
- 2 TBS DIJON MUSTARD
- 1/4 CUP RAW BLANCHED ALMOND BUTTER
- 2 1/2 CUPS OIL (see note below)
- 1 TBS SALT
- FRESHLY GROUND WHITE PEPPER
- 2 CUPS SWEET ONIONS DICED
- FINISHED VINAIGRETTE
- In a medium mixing bowl, combine lemon juice, mustard, almond butter, oil, salt and pepper. Whisk to form an emulsion. Store in refrigerator or transfer to various size jars and freeze. May be used as is or continue as below.
- Place diced onions in a jar. Pour base over onions just to cover. Refrigerate. It is ready to use after 1-2 hours...longer is better. Stores for 10 days to 2 weeks.
- To make the finished vinaigrette, it depends on what he wants (his words, not mine...this is like hitting a moving target). SOoooo, ideally you don't make a batch ahead of time but rather mix it up in the bottom of the salad bowl that you are using
- For salad greens serving 8-10 people, begin with 3-4 TBS base, add 3-4 TBS marinated onions, a splash of good red wine vinegar (see MJ dishes it out below) and minced parsley. Taste for acidity and seasoning. Add more salt, pepper, red wine vinegar or olive oil if needed. You need to find YOUR happy place.
- Xavier has MANY variations. He might add minced garlic, or chives, or basil, or pecans. or a combo of these. I have seen him add a chopped hard boiled egg. Possibilities are endless. The base can also be used as is. Once you start using it, you will get the hang of it and have your own variations.