French Mustard Salad Dressing

French Salad Dressing Recipe

(based on seed mustard)

(French: Vinaigrette à la Moutard à l'ancienne)

Ingredients for 4 people:


- 100 ml (3.5 fluid ounces) olive oil

- 70 ml (2.5 fluid ounces) balsamic vinegar

- 30 g mustard (1 ounce, or a heaping tablespoon)

- 45 g (1.5 ounces, or a large heaping tablespoon) crème fraîche (soured cream)





Preparation Time: 5 Minutes

Cooking Time: None






  • Place all ingredients in a jar or other sealed container

  • Shake until all ingredients are mixed (about 1 minute of vigorous shaking for the soured cream to break down and mix in)

To serve:

  • Pour into a small bowl.

  • Place a tablespoon in the bowl so that guests can spoon the dressing over their salad.

  • If the oil starts to separate from the vinegar, simply stir the ingredients with the spoon until they mix again


The title of this recipe is Vinaigrette à la Moutard à l'ancienne. A vinaigrette is simply a salad dressing based on oil and vinegar. Moutard is French for "mustard" and is a common ingredient in salad dressing (this may sound strange, but it is actually good). Moutard à l'ancienne is simply grain mustard (ancienne meaning old or previous, referring to the fact that mustard would originally have contained grains; it is in the more modern mustards that grains are no longer visible). I prefer the grain mustard version of this recipe as I find the taste less sharp and also more visually appealing.

I've made two modifications to the typical French Recipe. The first is that I use balsamic vinegar instead of white vinegar; I find this to producer a softer and more refined taste. I've also added soured cream, which offsets the sharpness of the vinegar and also helps prevent the oil and vinegar from separating.

Feel free to change the ratios of the ingredients. To make the recipe sharper, simply increase the vinegar and mustard. To make it softer and smoother, decrease these two ingredients and increase the amount of soured cream.

For more information on French Salad Dressings and other recipes, click on French Salad Dressing History and Recipes.  

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