Intro: Roquefort Dressing With a Whisper of Chervil and Tarragon
This recipe comes to me as being the original recipe for Roquefort or Blue Cheese Dressing. I didn't create or invent this. I found several recipes for this over a period of decades and reduced it to this version. It can be made with any blue cheese, but the French Roquefort is preferable. This isn't cheap dressing and is best for special occasions. The Chervil is the making of this dish. It's the Secret Ingredient!
3 ozs. Blue Cheese (Roquefort is the namesake) - 1 oz. for the salad, 2 ozs. for the dressing itself.
2 ozs. vinegar - I used white vinegar
2 tbs. milk - see note below
2 tsp. chervil - minced
1/2 tsp. tarragon - minced
1/4 tsp. salt
1/4 tsp. black pepper
Divide the cheese by eyeballing it. There should be twice as much for the dressing as for bits to toss into the salad.
Mix the vinegar with the salt and pepper. Set aside.
Mince the fresh chervil and tarragon. Add to the vinegar. Set aside.
In a large bowl, break up the cheese into bits with your fingers. Lick your fingers when finished and wash your hands.
Returning to the bowl of cheese, add the milk. Use a fork and mix the milk into the cheese. When it is a paste you can start with the vinegar. Mix in the milk until it as thin as it can be.
If you have a stick blender, use it now to blend the vinegar and cheese portions. Otherwise, add the vinegar, in a thin stream, whisking (or forking) like a madman. I mean constantly turn this mixture of cheese and vinegar in the bowl. If the mixture isn't done this way, the sauce takes on an off taste.
Chervil is a delicate herb and the flavor won't last more than a day. But it can be made 24 hours ahead and refrigerated.
Compose the salad. Break up the piece of blue cheese not used for the dressing.
This is enough dressing for a salad for two or three people. It clings mightily to the greens and is not remotely like store bought blue cheese dressing.
Cook's Note: Some may prefer a thicker dressing. Use heavy cream or 1/2 and 1/2 in place of milk.