Easy Salad Dressing

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Sometimes, an easy salad dressing made from scratch is all it takes to make a meal special. This creamy lemon-Parmesan dressing, created by Edible Orlando magazine editor Katie Farmand, also works well as a dip for leftover grilled veggies or drizzled over cooked noodles with some cherry tomatoes and fresh herbs. It’s tangy, salty, and packed with umami.

Katie created this recipe for her daughter as a super simple, weeknight version of her favorite salad dressing. It relies on the same classic flavors, but without the extra work of emulsifying or the risk of using a raw egg yolk. Plus it comes together in a mason jar, and the kids can help make it — win-win!

Of course, Caesar salad is classic for a reason. You can add or forgo grilled fish or chicken, but don’t skimp on the croutons. Ingredients include lemon juice, mayo, Dijon mustard, anchovy filets, salt and pepper, extra virgin olive oil, and Parmesan cheese. You can check out the full recipe here.

Anchovy paste is the key ingredient — don’t leave it out! You may be tempted to try it without this ingredient, but trust us when we say it’s just not the same without it. If Katie’s two children happily gobble it up with no inkling of fishiness, then you can, too! We promise, you won’t regret it.

Freshly grated Parmesan almost melts into this dressing in a way that the pre-grated kind just can’t. If you don’t have Parmesan, you can use Pecorino, just cut the amount in half as it is much saltier than Parmesan.

The other key is to adjust to suit your own tastes! That is the beauty of a homemade dressing. Watching your sodium intake? Reduce or omit the salt. Too tangy? Add more oil. Too oily? Add more lemon! (Katie’s daughter likes it extra lemony!) You can also add a pinch of hot red pepper flakes for spice or even smoked sea salt and pimentón for a touch of smokiness. The possibilities go on!

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