What Do a Vinaigrette and Your Life Have in Common?
A Metaphor on the Three Key Ingredients of Every Life.
Key ingredients: oil, acids and seasonings
A great vinaigrette requires only three ingredients: oil, acid, and some seasoning. Extra virgin olive oil is my choice. For an acid, which adds brightness to the dressing, I choose balsamic or a wine-based vinegar.
Next, add your choice of seasoning. Salt and freshly ground pepper are the traditional addition. Pinches of fresh or dried herbs are also an excellent addition. I prefer a teaspoon or two of Dijon mustard and sometimes from honey for sweetness.
Then to emulsify the ingredients, you can shake, whisk, or blend them together. I prefer the mess-free shaking method.
I learned how to make vinaigrette as a camper at a French language immersion camp when I was in middle school. My counselor took a cruet of olive oil and poured the rich green liquid into a jar. Next, she added some red wine vinegar. I watched with fascination as the vinegar sat atop the oil and didn’t mix. The two remained separate in the jar. After grinding in some black pepper and sprinkle in some salt, she spooned in a spoonful of Dijon mustard.
My counselor put the lid on the jar and handed it to me to shake it up to mix the ingredients. I stopped shaking after a few seconds, but my counselor urged me to continue. She told me I’d be sorry if I stopped because all I would taste is the vinegar. A few moments later, I stopped shaking, and she urged me to pour some of the dressing on my salad and to sample it. Delicious.
Oil and vinegar
Finding the perfect balance of the key ingredients.
Final key ingredient: seasonings
Salad dressing all need oil and acid. Everyone’s life has both the good and the bad. The blend of seasonings is up to our own unique tastes. Do you prefer oregano, thyme, or mustard? The final element of the salad dressing metaphor is the seasonings and spices. In Desire Mapping, our Core Desired Feelings represent the spices. No two people desire to feel the same combination of feelings.
The combination of acknowledging our dissatisfactions, practicing gratitude, and choosing our feelings creates a rich and delicious life. If you’ve had no hard times, you might take for granted the good times. Difficult times in our life makes the good times feel even more precious. We can’t find how we want to feel moving ahead unless we spend some time with the not so great and oh, so good times of our past.