Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Green Goddess Salad: A California institution

My friend Tracy has agreed to share her incredibly, ridiculously good Green Goddess salad, which she made as an homage to Cleopatra, being that we like to theme our book club suppers. Green Goddess dressing is a Californian institution and I'm not sure if it has made it across the pond.  I've always associated it (quite wrongly, I'd assume) with Jane Fonda, leotards, head bands and 80s work-outs. Apparently it originates at the Palace Hotel in San Francisco in 1923, when chef Philip Roehmer wanted to pay tribute to George Arliss and his hit play "The Green Goddess."

The key here is to wash and dry and refrigerate the green salad ingredients beforehand, so that when the salad comes to the table it's cold and crispy and delicious.

Green Goddess Salad (for Cleopatra & the Booklettes)

For the Salad
8 ounces Mache (or other lettuce)
1 blub fennel, trimmed, quartered and thinly sliced
6-8 ounces feta cheese, crumbled
1 English cucumber, peeled, quartered and sliced or cubed

For the Dressing
½ cup mayonnaise (I use Hellman’s/Best Foods)
½ cup Greek yogurt (or sour cream)
2 Tablespoons lemon juice
3 Tablespoons chopped Italian parsley
1 green onion, chopped
1 small garlic clove, smashed
2 Tablespoons chopped chives
1-2 Tablespoons chopped tarragon (optional)
Salt & pepper to taste

Place all dressing ingredients in a blender and blend till smooth. Add salt and pepper as desired and more lemon juice if needed. Refrigerate a few hours, letting the flavors mingle.

Prep and refrigerate (separately) salad ingredients. When set to serve, toss together salad with ¾ to a cup of the dressing---save the rest for crudités!

image from Wikipedia

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