One of Mike's all-time favorite restaurants is the Ramen Shop in Oakland. Their ramen is incredible, but what I inevitably have to order each time is their little gem lettuce salad with a garlic miso dressing. It is just so darn good. They do creative variations on the salad but the dressing is always tangy, a little sweet, and salty. This is my ode to their salad dressing.
1 1/2 cups creme fraiche
1 clove garlic
1/2 teaspoon black pepper
4 tablespoons white miso
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon lemon zest
1 teaspoon warm water (if needed to loosen the dressing up)
Using a mortar and pestle (or the side of your knife) smash the garlic into a paste with the black pepper. In a bowl, combine all of the ingredients and whisk until smooth. It might take a minute to two to get it smooth. Add salt or miso to taste. One tip I have for making salad dressing is to make it a little salty, remember, this is going to be spread out on ingredients (that are often unseasoned, like lettuce) and the dressing needs to season it. If it is too thick- add a little warm water to loosen. This recipe could also be great as a sandwich spread. If you get a chance, head to the Ramen Shop and try their take on it!