Last week in a post I mentioned a dressing I had enjoyed in a cafe while in Dallas. Via a little Google detective work I found that it originated in a place called Cafe Rio, a Mexican Grill "quick-service" franchise mostly in the west. I've been thinking about the flavor of that dressing almost non-stop. The cilantro in the garden was at its best and we're big cilantro fans ... also, a few tomatillos made the garden scene, so I had no choice but to put my spin on it! The flavor is irresistible and it's versatility is right on! And ... it's incredibly easy - what more could one want???
Here's the recipe:
Creamy Cilantro Ranch Dressing
One (4 ounce) packet buttermilk ranch salad dressing mix - I used Hidden Valley
2 - 3 tomatillos - cut into quarters
1/2 bunch cilantro
1 garlic clove
1 jalapeno pepper
juice of one lime (about 2 T.)
1. Mix buttermilk dressing as directed on package.
2. Combine all other ingredients and mix in a blender until creamy and smooth.
3. Seal in airtight container in refrigerator. (make ahead - the flavor improves if the dressing sits a bit)
Great, natch, on salad greens, but also as a dip for fresh veggies, or even french fries. I used it on a main dish summer salad with leftover london broil, some chicken, garden greens, fresh corn and cottage cheese - so, so good. Definitely gotta try it as a dressing for potato salad. Has officially been dubbed my new go-to dressing!
Then, there were Fava Beans, not plentiful at the moment, but enough for me to play with. I was in the mood for a dip as I had some fresh, crusty New York style peasant bread perfect for slathering dip onto. The recipes I found in a quick Google search were a lot like hummus, so I decided, instead, to construct my own out of ingredients I had in the frig. Sorry, but I have no ingredient amounts but make it "to taste", and it'll be as you like it.
I used lightly parboiled favas, cooled them, removed the pods, and put the beans in my mini-processor. I then added green onion, goat cheese, a medley of herbs/greens (dill, basil, parsley, arugula), 1/2 jalapeno pepper, sea salt and freshly ground pepper, a little fresh lemon juice and a bit of olive oil to create a chunky style, fresh tasting, herby-ish dip - much to our liking, I might add. Give it a whirl (no pun intended!) - it's quite lovely!
Can't wait to see what's "ripe" in the garden tonight when I get home - I love summer cooking, fresh and simple!