Saturday, March 19, 2016

Green Goddess Dressing

Yesterday I showed you the tablescape from our St. Patrick's Day family dinner. Today I'll begin to share the menu and recipes with you!

You can't think of St. Patrick's Day without thinking of green, right? We started with a simple wedge salad with Green Goddess Dressing. It didn't come out quite as green as I would have hoped, but it sure tasted green! This is a recipe from Ina Garten, The Barefoot Contessa.

Green Goddess Dressing

1 cup good mayonnaise
1 bunch chopped green onions (white and green parts)
1 cup chopped fresh basil leaves
juice of two lemons (about 1/4 cup)
two large cloves of garlic, chopped
2 teaspoons anchovy paste
2 teaspoons kosher salt
1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1 cup sour cream

Place all ingredients except sour cream in a blender and blend until smooth. Add sour cream and process just until smooth. Serve immediately or refrigerate until ready to serve.

NOTE - I only use real Hellman's. That's it. Every once in a while I'll buy Hellman's light or another brand, but I never finish the jar. I just love the extra creamy and salty taste Hellman's brings to the table. That being said, I will add a little more salt to this recipe next time. Also - whatever you do, DON'T skip the anchovy paste. You don't have to tell your family it's there. And you don't have to taste it as you add it to the dressing (although I recommend you do - it's good and salty - nothing fishy about it!). You would definitely miss the flavor if you leave it out.

I've told you before how during the winter I will often buy the little packages of herbs at the grocery store, but that they can be as expensive as a whole plant. Well, with spring all but here, I went ahead and bought my herbs earlier this week. I haven't planted them yet - I was waiting for the pollen to subside! We've gotten a lot of rain the last couple of days, so I'll probably get out today to do that. In the meantime, I placed all the herbs on my deck table for easy care and watering.

I love basil and usually start the season with two plants. Same this year, but I also picked up a Thai basil plant and a cinnamon basil plant. It'll be fun to play around with them this summer.

In order to have enough basil for the dressing, I knew I was going to have to pick my plants bald! Here's how to do that and still encourage new growth. Follow a stem down to the bottom. Right above the bottom pair of leaves, pinch the stalk. As long as there is a set of leaves left together, more will grow back. In fact, it will grow back thicker.


Here's the before and after pic!

I guess I forgot to take pictures throughout the process, but here's the finished product. It makes a pint.

This is a tease picture I sent to my sister-in-law, Clancy, with the byline - "Wish you were here!". She loves stuff like this. That's a Campari tomato I'm dipping. Yumm...

I kept it simple with a wedge of iceberg lettuce, quartered Campari tomatoes and thinly shaved red onion slices. I wanted the dressing to be the star. And it was! 

Here's a peak at my green tablesetting. If you missed it yesterday, you can catch up here.

Tomorrow we're on to the main course - corned beef brisket, of course!

I'm so glad you stopped by my neck of the woods!

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