It's worth a few minutes to understand the basics of acids, oils, and especially emulsifiers. Follow a basic ratio (Ruth Reichl likes 2 parts oil to 1 part acid, while Jacques Pepin likes it a little more mellow with 4 parts oil to 1 part acid) and taste as you go. Add in chopped shallots, fennel or garlic and don't forget to season well with salt and pepper. You'll be amazed how quickly you can whip up a dressing far superior to anything you'd pick up at the store!
Check out Ruth's recipes for shallot vinaigrette and blue cheese dressing below.
→ Read more: How to Make a Better Vinaigrette at Gilt Taste
(Image: Joy Kull/Gilt Taste)