Imperial French Dressing

ImperialDressingBeakerVertbfLOAnd so, we find ourselves with yet another salad dressing thingy from the days of canned peach halves on cottage cheese…

If the original advertisement can be believed, this bit o’ salad adornment comes to us courtesy of the nice folk at Del Monte ketchup – “rich and lively… made with pineapple vinegar… the flavor goes farther!”


They call it a French dressing, but you cook bits of it first – seems to kinda defy the classic definition of a French Dressing to me, but, whatever works.

And you know what?

This dressing does work!

FishChipsTartarImperialbfLOIt is a bit fussy to put together compared to my fave go-to Catalina (that extra bit of cooking stuff), but it does make for a nice little dressing – and I must admit that I also really enjoyed it with fish sticks for our quick-before-puppy-class-dinner last night. Mebbe that cooking of the spices mellowed out some of the flavors to make it more amenable as a table condiment than other salad dressings?

Try it yourself and see.

I should note that I made a few substitutions to accommodate a temporary lack in my larder (I used the last of the brown sugar making barbecue sauce the other day) or a permanent lack of desire on my part to use ImperialDressingSpicesbfLOthat particular ingredient (dill) – but will include the original recipe along with my, ermmm, adjustments. I should also note that I only made a half batch.

Cooked bit:
•1/4 cup brown sugar – I used white sugar
•1-1/2 tsp salt
•1/4 tsp pepper – I used lemon pepper
•1 tsp onion salt – I didn’t have any
SpicesSimmerbfLO•1/2 tsp. celery seed – I used celery salt to make up for the lack of onion salt
•Tabasco to taste – I added 8 drops
•1 tsp paprika
•1 tsp dill – I used chives
•1/2 cup red wine vinegar

Combine in a small sauce pan and bring to a simmer over medium heat, stirring more or less constantly. This will be really thick, so you could thin it a bit with some water; or, wait until you finish the dressing and see if it needs to be thinned and add it then.

ImperialDressingCapersbfLOSet aside to cool for 10 minutes, then combine in a blender jar and pulse to combine with:

Other stuff:
•1 cup ketchup
•3 tbsp capers (I leave them whole)
•1 tsp caper juice
•2 tsp Worcestershire sauce

With the blender still running, slowly stream through the feeding hole in the lid until the dressing emulsifies:

ImperialDressingBlenderbfLOThe oil:
•1/2 to 1 cup oil (I use 1/2 cup canola and 1/4 cup olive oil)

Note: If the dressing seems a bit too thick, add a tablespoon or two of water and pulse to combine.

•1 or 2 cloves or garlic, speared on a toothpick

Transfer to a cruet or lidded jar and add the garlic clove(s) – if using. The whole thing with the toothpick is so you can let the garlic flavor the dressing for a bit and then fish it ImperialDressingBeakerbfLOout before it flavors things a bit too much.

A bit fussy to make, but nice. I didn’t cut down on the amount of sugar or the oil called for in this dressing as I have with many of the other vintage salad dressings I’ve tried, but then this recipe called for a lot less to begin with.

Tasty on a salad (and those fish sticks!), I plan on testing this puppy out on some grilled chops or chicken very, very soon.

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