Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Homemade Ranch

Do you have any bottles of salad dressing in your fridge? How long have they been there? Can't remember?

In my personal food journey I set out to identify what the most processed and preservative-filled foods I ate were. We really eat well for the most part, but I decided salad dressings (along with other condiments) and crackers were probably the biggest offenders on my list. What exactly is salad dressing made of that allows it to sit in the fridge for 6 months without going bad?

Ranch is like the all-American salad dressing. Adults like it, kids love it. Its great on a chef salad--better on a taco salad. And my boys love dipping carrot sticks in it. Ditch the preservatives--it is time for homemade ranch dressing.

This recipe makes a thinner-than-store-bought dressing. That is a good thing. It coats your salad more evenly and means that you use less dressing to get your salad lightly coated.

Ranch Salad Dressing Recipe

1/2 tsp dried parsley flakes
1/4 tsp dried minced onion
1/4 tsp garlic powder
1/4 tsp onion powder
1/2 tsp salt
1 pinch dried dill weed
1/2 cup mayonnaise
1/2 cup buttermilk

In a bowl whisk all ingredients together. Add more buttermilk or milk to reach desired consistency. Pour into a dressing cruet. (Alternately--combine all ingredients in a salad dressing shaker. Shake to combine.) Refrigerate until serving. Makes one cup.

I love the little one on the left. $5 and preservative free.

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