Wild Flower Vinaigrette Recipe
Herbaceous or Floral!
Field, Stream and Forest!
Connoisseur Vinaigrette …
When cold weather blows in, I settle down into my comfy chair, snuggled under a mound of blankets. As chill wind and icy blasts swirl outside, I dream of warm, sun-drenched foods freshly foraged from forest and meadow. This winter armchair excursion is all about wildcrafted vinaigrette. Here’s a collection of my favorites:
Spruce or Fir Tip Vinaigrette
1 to 1 1/2″ spruce tips (gather in early spring, just as the tips emerge from their papery husks)
Clean tips (remove paper husks). Wash in tepid water. Dry throughly. Do this the day before you add tips to the following: 4 c olive oil – warmed over low heat (130f – 140f degrees). Fill glass jar with tips, add warm oil. Cover. Let marinate in cool place – at least two weeks.
1 1/2 tbsp spruce tip oil
1 1/2 tbsp olive oil
2 tbsp lemon juice
1 tbsp apple mint leaf – chopped
Whisk all together, adjusting ingr’s to taste. Excellent for trout and venison dishes. **You may also infuse the tips in vodka (this replaces the oil) for delicious martini or gin cocktail bases.
Oxeye Daisy Vinaigrette
(Common or Oxeye Daisy – Chrysanthemum cucanthemum L.) Photo Credit – Salzstar
1 tbsp. oxeye daisy leaf, chop
2 tbsp. wild chives (or garden grown), chop
1 tbsp. grapeseed oil
1 tbsp. olive oil
2 tbsp. apple cider vinegar
salt and pepper to taste
Combine all ingredients, whisk together and season.
Add a handful of small young oxeye daisy blossoms.
Wonderful for dressing seafood, asparagus spears, wild lettuce salads.
Watercress, Ground Ivy, Lime and Nutmeg Vinaigrette
1/2 c fresh watercress (gather from unpolluted stream or creek) – clean, chop
1/2 c fresh ground ivy (gather from organic lawn/field areas) – clean, chop
1/2 c olive oil
1 lime – juiced
1/2 to 1 tsp nutmeg (to your taste)
1 tsp sea salt
You may emulsify all ingredients together or whisk by hand.
Watercress adds a water-fresh greenness, while the ground ivy adds a hit of spicy sparkle. Toss into organic greens and add roasted toasty pistachio nuts.
Blue Violet, Cuke and Mango Vinaigrette
(Common Blue Violet, Viola sororia)
1 packed pint jar of violet blossoms – freshly plucked when flowers first open.
Fill jar with white rice vinegar, covering violets. Cover with non-metal lid.
Let vinegar/flower jar set for at least 48 hours – shake jar gently from time to time.
Strain flowers from vinegar.
1/2 c Hermes Violet Suntory Liqueur, if you can find it – if you can afford it.
(or use Rothman & Winter Creme de Violette Liqueur)
1/4 c violet vinegar
1 small (seedless) cucumber – remove skin, process to puree, strain. Reserve juice.
1 small champagne mango – remove skin, process to puree, strain. Reserve liquid.
Whisk together juices and the above ingr’s.
Whisk in: 1/2 to 3/4 c extra virgin olive oil (the mildest you can find – French or Californian)
Dress tender spring greens with vinaigrette. Gently mix in freshly picked violet blossoms and small chop leaves.
Wild Ramps, Pepper Grass and Bacon Vinaigrette
Ramps (Allium tricoccum), Pepper Grass (Lepidium Virginicum)
1 cup ramps, white bulbs and green leaves – clean and cut into 1/2″ pieces
1/2 c pepper grass stems and leaves – chop
Bacon – fry, drain, break into small pieces – reserve fry drippings
2/3 c olive oil – add drippings to make the 2/3 cup
Sea salt and Pink peppercorns – reduce in a grinder. Process ramps and pepper grass to puree. Add olive oil and emulsify with seasonings. Season to taste. Lightly hand mix bacon pieces into vinaigrette.
Wonderful when served over early spring spinach from your garden.
**NOTE: As always……only forage from clean, unpolluted waterways, gardens, fields, forested areas where you are sure no pesticides, herbicides or synthetic fertilizers have been used. This is wild crafting food at it’s best!!
ITEMS WE USED TO MAKE THIS RECIPE