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Your Favorite Salad Dressing--All Types

Perilagu Khan Jul 9, 2013 02:31 PM

There have been a few threads dealing with favorite bottled salad dressings, but to my knowledge, not one dealing with salad dressings irrespective of their source.

So, whether it be manufactured with all the wrong chemicals, whomped up in your kitchen using nothing but the most pristine ingredients, or served by a particular restaurant, what is your favorite salad dressing?

I'm going with the old-fashnioned creamy Roquefort dressing that used to be de rigeur in steakhouses. It was simply nonpareil in my book, and I regret its passing.

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  1. j
    Jerseygirl111 Jul 9, 2013 02:40 PM

    All of them. Can never have too much dressing, nothing is worse than dry lettuce. Gah. My current favorite is Sesame Ginger, but I also favor Caesar, Italian, Strawberry vinaigrette and Blue Cheese, especially made in house at restaurants. But I always come back to HV Ranch (hangs head in shame-so uncool).

    2 Replies
    1. re: Jerseygirl111
      Perilagu Khan Jul 9, 2013 02:42 PM

      Awwww. Don't feel so bad, Jerseygirl111. I like HV Ranch, too. We can be uncool together.

      1. re: Perilagu Khan
        LA Buckeye Fan Jul 9, 2013 03:46 PM

        +2 on the HV Ranch. I love homemade ranch (Dave Lieberman's recipe). I love many Sesame, tahini, and anchovy based dressing. But my favorite has to be ranch. No shame. I'm a rube.

    2. w
      wadejay26 Jul 9, 2013 02:42 PM

      Cannot give just one answer, because it depends on my mood. Either 1000 island or blue cheese.

      1. biondanonima Jul 9, 2013 02:55 PM

        I'll eat just about any non-sweet salad dressing happily, but my favorite is creamy blue cheese. Some brands are better than others, and homemade is best, but it's hard to go wrong with blue cheese!

        1 Reply
        1. re: biondanonima
          t
          Terrieltr Jul 12, 2013 09:43 AM

          I will never understand sweet salad dressings. It's an affront to my taste buds.

        2. w
          wincountrygirl Jul 9, 2013 03:04 PM

          Has anyone had the smoky bacon Russian from Chop't in NYC? It is to die for.

          1. e
            escondido123 Jul 9, 2013 03:31 PM

            When I clicked on this, that was exactly the kind of dressing I was going to write about. I make a good Roquefort vinaigrette but it is miles away from the one you're talking about.

            7 Replies
            1. re: escondido123
              fldhkybnva Jul 9, 2013 03:57 PM

              Roquefort vinaigrette that sounds amazing! Do you have a favorite recipe?

              1. re: fldhkybnva
                Perilagu Khan Jul 9, 2013 04:55 PM

                La Martinique makes an outstanding bleu cheese vinaigrette, but I don't think the bleu is Roquefort.

                1. re: fldhkybnva
                  e
                  escondido123 Jul 9, 2013 06:14 PM

                  I just make my standard vinaigrette with crushed garlic, finely chopped shallot, a little Dijon mustard, balsamic and olive oil. Then I add Roquefort and mash it with a fork until creamy.

                  1. re: escondido123
                    s
                    Steve Jul 19, 2013 05:35 AM

                    That sounds very nice. Bravo. I hope this gives more people inspiration.

                    1. re: escondido123
                      tcamp Jul 26, 2013 09:10 AM

                      Yum, you're describing what is probably my favorite type of dressing. I love blue cheese but prefer it in a vinaigrette rather than a creamy dressing. I make mine like you do except not much mashing, more small chunks in the vinaigrette.

                      1. re: tcamp
                        fldhkybnva Jul 26, 2013 09:20 AM

                        I am planning a buffalo chicken salad and was going to use a creamy blue cheese dressing but you might have convinced me to go the vinaigrette route. The creamy dressing is pretty classic but I'm sure this would be good as well. I whipped up a batch of a blue cheese vinaigrette a few weeks ago which worked well on a seared skirt steak. It was quite mild, so I think I need to throw in more blue cheese next time. I'll have to convince my guests that not all hot wings need a creamy dressing partner :)

                        1. re: fldhkybnva
                          tcamp Jul 26, 2013 10:25 AM

                          Add or up the garlic to spice things up!

                2. fldhkybnva Jul 9, 2013 03:41 PM

                  Creamy blue cheese dressing or any sort of vinaigrette - favorite is a simple walnut oil or EVOO with dijon, shallots, and a mix of red wine and apple cider vinegar, maybe a dash of Herbes de Provence. Recently though, my favorite is Green Goddess dressing.

                  9 Replies
                  1. re: fldhkybnva
                    LA Buckeye Fan Jul 9, 2013 03:50 PM

                    ohhh...I forgot about green goddess. Love Ina Garten's basil green goddess.

                    1. re: LA Buckeye Fan
                      fldhkybnva Jul 9, 2013 03:56 PM

                      I've never tried the basil version, but the chives, tarragon, parsley version was delicious! It's an Ina recipe so I'm sure I'd love that too.

                    2. re: fldhkybnva
                      Perilagu Khan Jul 9, 2013 04:57 PM

                      The Khantessa recently purchased a bottle of Green Goddess. This was the first GG I'd ever had. I like it.

                      1. re: fldhkybnva
                        t
                        tardigrade Jul 9, 2013 07:56 PM

                        Green Goddess is my favorite: I make mine from a recipe in an old Fanny Farmer cookbook, and it does vary according to what's on hand.

                        Historical trivia: before the invention of ranch dressing, Green Goddess (named from an old play) was the most popular salad dressing on the West Coast.

                        1. re: tardigrade
                          fldhkybnva Jul 10, 2013 08:58 AM

                          Indeed, I think Ranch was a Green Goddess spin off but for me Green Goddess is infinitely better, not even in the same ballpark.

                          1. re: fldhkybnva
                            j
                            jennyfur Jul 10, 2013 12:36 PM

                            I make my own from the FF cookbook, too...but, I miss the Green Goddess dressing that you used to get bottled from the store. Wishbone or Seven Seas, I think.

                            1. re: jennyfur
                              fldhkybnva Jul 10, 2013 12:46 PM

                              I think Annie's Organic has a version but I've never tried it.

                              1. re: fldhkybnva
                                j
                                jennyfur Jul 12, 2013 01:20 PM

                                It is not the same...just the same name.

                        2. re: fldhkybnva
                          pinehurst Jul 10, 2013 07:51 AM

                          Total yes to all of what fldhkybnva said.

                        3. alliegator Jul 9, 2013 03:43 PM

                          I love me some cilantro lime vinaigrette. I try various recipes from the interwebs and don't have a stand out favorite.
                          Never been a creamy dressing fan.

                          1. Uncle Bob Jul 9, 2013 04:25 PM

                            Without question the original house dressing from the old Greek restaurant, The Rotisserie up in Jackson. Known locally as 'Come Back' sauce/dressing. It's applications are endless. Yum yum!

                            6 Replies
                            1. re: Uncle Bob
                              Uncle Bob Jul 9, 2013 04:43 PM

                              Just thought of my runner-up dressing. It's the house made Italian Dressing from the Original Don's Seafood and Steak House in downtown Lafayette. Basically a Caper, olive oil, and garlic (lots of garlic) dressing. ~ My go to for a non creamy dressing. Yum yum again!

                              1. re: Uncle Bob
                                Perilagu Khan Jul 9, 2013 05:00 PM

                                A long time ago (1977), in a town far, far away (Gallup, New Mexico), there was an olde-tymey steakhouse called Culpepper Cattle Company. They had an Italian dressing that absolutely drove me and my little brother wild. The closest thing I've had to it since is Paul Newman's, but Newman's is a little bit sweeter.

                              2. re: Uncle Bob
                                linguafood Jul 9, 2013 11:14 PM

                                I wonder if that's the mayo sauce ("come back sauce") mentioned in another thread. I was kinda excited about it, but it was a bit of a letdown. Though it was presented more as a dipping sauce, I actually couldn't imagine putting that on my salad...

                                I'm sure you could play with ingredient measures and stuff, but I felt like I wasted some damn fine Duke on that one... maybe it's just not my thang.

                                1. re: linguafood
                                  Uncle Bob Jul 10, 2013 05:00 AM

                                  I know not of the 'other thread' you mention, so can't comment.

                                  Comeback Sauce/Dressing is a mayonnaise based product where Duke's is the preferred/required mayonnaise.

                                  There are many versions of the the dressing/sauce floating around. For the most part they all fall short.

                                  1. re: Uncle Bob
                                    linguafood Jul 10, 2013 03:40 PM

                                    "There are many versions of the the dressing/sauce floating around. For the most part they all fall short."

                                    Yes. It was a massive letdown. I think it might've been on a Trader Joe's thread for some reason while discussing mayonnaise... one of them subthreads.

                                    I'm still pissed I wasted all that good Duke.

                                    1. re: linguafood
                                      Uncle Bob Jul 10, 2013 04:31 PM

                                      "I'm sure you could play with ingredient measures and stuff, but I felt like I wasted some damn fine Duke on that one... maybe it's just not my thang."

                                      I think you may be right.

                              3. t
                                ThanksVille Jul 9, 2013 04:48 PM

                                Favorite dressing is an insane 20 ingredient vinaigrette developed by my uncle for a family restaurant.....however recently discovered a commercial dressing, 'Brianna's' readily available in central jersey. They have perhaps a dozen options and have yet to find one that we didn't truly enjoy.

                                2 Replies
                                1. re: ThanksVille
                                  j
                                  justalex Jul 9, 2013 08:33 PM

                                  Brianna's makes some very good dressings. They're available here in Minnesota too. My favorites thus far are the Champagne Caper vinaigrette and the Blush Wine vinaigrette.

                                  1. re: justalex
                                    JenJeninCT Jul 14, 2013 06:42 PM

                                    I love the Brianna's Balsamic, but it is SO high calorie I haven't had it in a while

                                2. tim irvine Jul 9, 2013 04:55 PM

                                  I miss creamy Roquefort, too. Best substitute I have found is a 3:1 EVOO and homemade vinaigrette with a little Maille Dijon as an emulsifier and plenty of crumbled veined cheese, usually blue. Sigh.

                                  4 Replies
                                  1. re: tim irvine
                                    e
                                    escondido123 Jul 11, 2013 09:12 PM

                                    I made a creamy Roquefort this week using mainly no-fat Greek yogurt, a little mayo, a little olive oil--plus vinegar and Roquefort. Tasted as rich to me as the stuff from my early years before calories mattered.

                                    1. re: escondido123
                                      fldhkybnva Jul 12, 2013 07:00 AM

                                      Sounds wonderful, what proportions did you use?

                                      1. re: fldhkybnva
                                        e
                                        escondido123 Jul 12, 2013 08:30 AM

                                        I would have to just guess at that. Maybe 3 parts yogurt to one part mayo and Roquefort. A splash each of balsamic and red wine vinegars and a little oil until you get the right consistency. I got the Roquefort out ahead of time and put a chunk in the salad bowl to warm up and soften so I could mash that with a fork before I added the other ingredients. The trick is to be careful with the mayo because you don't want its flavor to be prominent. And of course, lots of pepper.

                                        1. re: fldhkybnva
                                          linguafood Jul 12, 2013 08:43 AM

                                          Sometimes, you just have to experiment a little yourself until you get the mix & flavors right. Just start making it and taste along as you go. Really. Give it a try.

                                    2. g
                                      Georgia Strait Jul 9, 2013 05:01 PM

                                      steakhouse roquefort - recipe? HOW CAN I make that at home - also

                                      favorites -

                                      neiman marcus poppy seed dressing (home made recipe over citrus and avocado at US thxgiving or xmas)

                                      better homes and gardens "french dressing" circa 1960 book. oil, vinegar, red paprika or something. Great for marinating cooked potatoes before dressing with miracle whip (cringe!)

                                      1. NanaMoussecurry Jul 9, 2013 05:05 PM

                                        sesame miso homemade dressing is my current fave

                                        2 Replies
                                        1. re: NanaMoussecurry
                                          fldhkybnva Jul 9, 2013 05:13 PM

                                          I have a jar of miso in the fridge which has never been used, do you have a quick recipe?

                                          1. re: fldhkybnva
                                            NanaMoussecurry Jul 9, 2013 06:15 PM

                                            I do not remember the source but....

                                            Sesame Ginger Miso Dressing
                                            (for 2/3 cup) - Serves: 6

                                            4 tbsp rice vinegar
                                            4 tbsp olive, canola, or grape seed oil
                                            2 tbsp sesame oil
                                            1 tbsp honey or sugar
                                            1 tbsp miso paste
                                            1 tbsp soy sauce
                                            1 tbsp sesame seeds
                                            1″ piece ginger
                                            2 large garlic clove

                                            Place all the ingredients in a blender or food processor (or just use a stick blender). Blend the ingredients until the dressing is well blended and creamy.Use immediately or store in the refrigerator for 1 week.

                                        2. suzigirl Jul 9, 2013 05:10 PM

                                          Kens lite ceasar dressing, lite asian sesame and lite blue cheese. Makoto honey Ginger dressing. Old Dutch sweet and sour(getting hard to find). And Olive Garden's italian. Village Inn used to have a dressing called la scallia that they sold as italian that was very very good but they are gone from here and i am not sure if the dressing is the same.

                                          1. ipsedixit Jul 9, 2013 05:16 PM

                                            Dunno the name, but rice wine vinegar, minced garlic, salt, sugar and a pinch of white pepper.

                                            1. n
                                              Nf98103 Jul 9, 2013 05:37 PM

                                              If you like blue cheese dressing, try Lighthouse Big Bleu. I'm super picky about blue cheese dressing, can't stand any of those oily tasting ones like Marie Callenders, etc. It is by far the best store bought I've ever had. Not sure if it's just regionally available in the Pacific Northwest since it's made in small town Idaho... Definitely not a diet one though

                                              3 Replies
                                              1. re: Nf98103
                                                fldhkybnva Jul 9, 2013 05:55 PM

                                                I agree, it's tasty. If you're a ranch fan it's also the only bottled ranch which I actually enjoy. SO loves ranch but there's not always homemade around and I finally got him to switch to Lighthouse instead of Hidden Valley.

                                                1. re: Nf98103
                                                  alkapal Jul 9, 2013 10:58 PM

                                                  idaho needs a lighthouse?
                                                  ;-).

                                                  1. re: Nf98103
                                                    KaimukiMan Jul 26, 2013 07:46 PM

                                                    I agree on Lighthouse. As well as Bob's.

                                                    My other favorite is a mix of rice wine vinegar, chinese plum sauce and a dash of toasted sesame oil. Toasted sesame seeds are optional. I'm not generally a fan of overly sweet dressings but the sweet/sour of this is very appealing to me.

                                                    I'm not a fan of the ubiquitous Ranch that seems to appear everywhere.

                                                  2. Njchicaa Jul 9, 2013 06:00 PM

                                                    Barbecue ranch dressing straight out of the Neely's cookbook. People beg me to make it for them. It makes me WANT to eat salad.

                                                    2 Replies
                                                    1. re: Njchicaa
                                                      j
                                                      Jerseygirl111 Jul 10, 2013 04:25 PM

                                                      I need to look for this. I love all those incarnations of HV Ranch.

                                                      1. re: Jerseygirl111
                                                        Njchicaa Jul 12, 2013 01:30 PM

                                                        I've seen the recipe online. Easy to make and soooo good. I just use bottled BBQ sauce and dry BBQ seasoning rather than make the Neely's ones called for in the dressing.

                                                    2. m
                                                      miss_belle Jul 9, 2013 06:05 PM

                                                      Homemade blue cheese dressing:

                                                      16 oz. sour cream
                                                      1/2 c. mayo(scant)
                                                      5 oz. crumbled (your everyday)blue cheese
                                                      A little Worcestershire sauce to taste.
                                                      And here's the kicker.
                                                      A package of Ranch dip.

                                                      Mix all together and enjoy. It's thick but you can always thin with a bit of milk. You did say whomped up in your own kitchen was alright.

                                                      4 Replies
                                                      1. re: miss_belle
                                                        suzigirl Jul 9, 2013 06:54 PM

                                                        Must try now... a blue cheese ranch hybrid sounds really good.
                                                        If you have one near you and like HVR, sav-a-lot has an amazing ranch dressing knock off that is HVR-like for no where near the price. I bet that dressing would be great either way

                                                        1. re: suzigirl
                                                          Perilagu Khan Jul 10, 2013 07:42 AM

                                                          There's a local Italian restaurant (est. 1965), that serves the finest salads in town. And their bleu cheese dressing, which I suspect is a bleu cheese/ranch hybrid, is a life-changer. Man is it good.

                                                          1. re: suzigirl
                                                            m
                                                            miss_belle Jul 10, 2013 04:07 PM

                                                            If you do try it start out with a 1/2 packet of ranch dip and go from there. I haven't bought HVR in years.I always buy the store brand for 99 cents and it's a smaller packet so henceforth.

                                                          2. re: miss_belle
                                                            Perilagu Khan Jul 10, 2013 07:41 AM

                                                            Indeed I did. All types. It's a big-tent thread.

                                                          3. j
                                                            Jenny Ondioline Jul 9, 2013 10:33 PM

                                                            Rather than a blue cheese dressing, I prefer to simply crumble a little blue cheese atop my salad: my wife loathes the stuff, so I just get a little for myself.

                                                            If I had to choose, any simple homemade vinaigrette is probably my favorite, though I'm also a fan of a bit of Hidden Valley (but ONLY from the powdered mix -- the bottled versions are gloppy and gross).

                                                            I also do a lovely Thousand Island, which couldn't be simpler to make from scratch: 1/3 cup each mayo and ketchup, 1/4 cup pickle relish, whisk to combine and chill. You'll never buy bottled again, and you probably have all three items at hand anyway.

                                                            1. linguafood Jul 9, 2013 11:23 PM

                                                              Where do I begin?

                                                              I don't buy bottled dressings, but I love any number of homemade dressings -- always depending on the mood I'm in, what the salad is served with, what the actual salad ingredients are, etc. etc.

                                                              That said, my favorite vinaigrette (for a fennel-citrus-salad or bitter greens) is a walnut & sherry vinaigrette with dijon mustard and maybe some garlic. Lots of ground black pepper. Works well with any kinds of additions such as toasted nuts, goat or feta or blue cheese, avocado, bacon, etc. etc.

                                                              The "realtor's garlic-buttermilk-dressing" has become a recent favorite for butter lettuces or romaine, as is my blue cheese dressing (mayo, buttermilk, blue cheese, apple cider vinegar, s&lotsa pepper, which my man lurvs).

                                                              April Bloomfield's lemon-caper-dressing is great, but it needs a really fatty meat main as a counterpart as it is *intense*. It is fab, tho.

                                                              Greek "dressing" which I put in quotes simply because it's really just olive oil, rwv, oregano, s&p. Similar with just tossing salad with olive oil & rwv for a simple green salad with pasta or such.

                                                              LOVE a good Caesar dressing (oo, raw egg, lemon juice, anchovies -- at least 4 filets, garlic, parm, lotsa ground black pepper.... so, so good).

                                                              German-style dill-yogurt-dressing for cukes.

                                                              As you can tell, I love salads. They're an important and favorite part of my every day meals, as in I miss salad if I haven't had any in more than 2 days.

                                                              That said, I haven't ever found a store-bought dressing that I really, really liked more than anything I could make at home fairly quickly.

                                                              17 Replies
                                                              1. re: linguafood
                                                                fldhkybnva Jul 10, 2013 07:30 AM

                                                                The walnut sherry vinaigrette with Dijon and garlic and usually shallots is also a favorite in our house and usually tops at least one salad every week. What are the proportions for your garlic buttermilk dressing? I have a bottle of buttermilk begging to be used in the fridge. I too am a salad lover so I appreciate all the great ideas you've just added. Once I learned to make salad dressing at home I never buy it anymore and it's quite nice as you can make just enough for a salad or two and as you said the taste is usually superior.

                                                                1. re: fldhkybnva
                                                                  linguafood Jul 10, 2013 03:37 PM

                                                                  It's loosely based on the realtor's buttermilk dressing -- weren't you the one who brought it up on the WFD thread?

                                                                  1. re: linguafood
                                                                    fldhkybnva Jul 10, 2013 04:05 PM

                                                                    Nope, wasn't me, never made a buttermilk dressing.

                                                                2. re: linguafood
                                                                  c
                                                                  cstout Jul 11, 2013 10:21 AM

                                                                  realtor's garlic-buttermilk dressing, care to share that recipe?

                                                                  1. re: cstout
                                                                    Perilagu Khan Jul 11, 2013 12:13 PM

                                                                    nm

                                                                    1. re: cstout
                                                                      linguafood Jul 11, 2013 12:53 PM

                                                                      http://www.food.com/recipe/the-realto...

                                                                      1. re: linguafood
                                                                        c
                                                                        cstout Jul 11, 2013 02:31 PM

                                                                        Shhhhhhhh, don't anyone tell Perilagu Khan the realtor gave you the recipe too!

                                                                        1. re: cstout
                                                                          Perilagu Khan Jul 11, 2013 02:36 PM

                                                                          I think they keep a big tub o' this stuff next to the water cooler at all Century 21 offices. And if you buy a house from one of their agents, they give you a jar.

                                                                    2. re: linguafood
                                                                      fldhkybnva Jul 21, 2013 03:20 PM

                                                                      Wow, I just made the realtor's buttermilk dressing for a grilled chicken salad and...delicious! Thanks for the recommendation. I think it's the first time I've ever used buttermilk which also served double duty to tenderize the chicken which also worked amazingly well.

                                                                      1. re: fldhkybnva
                                                                        linguafood Jul 21, 2013 03:54 PM

                                                                        It's a really nice dressing to have around and keeps for a week at least.... not that it ever lasts that long :-)

                                                                        1. re: linguafood
                                                                          fldhkybnva Jul 21, 2013 04:55 PM

                                                                          Yea, I thought I'd have it for a few days but I figured my salad could use just a little more, and a little more....I think I'll definitely use the rest for lunch tomorrow and make a bigger batch next time.

                                                                      2. re: linguafood
                                                                        fldhkybnva Jul 26, 2013 07:09 AM

                                                                        Do you have the quick proportions for your blue cheese dressing?

                                                                        1. re: fldhkybnva
                                                                          linguafood Jul 26, 2013 12:01 PM

                                                                          Not really. I never measure anything and just throw it together by tasting. Eyeballing it, let's say I'll start with about 4 oz of blue cheese, then add 1/2 cup buttermilk, some mayo, lots of ground pepper, and a bottle cap of cider vinegar, and salt to taste. I mix it with a stick blender. Sometimes I'll add a splash of half n half if I find it too thick.

                                                                          The proportions really depend on how thick or thin you want your dressing, how much blue cheese flavor you want in it, etc. etc.

                                                                          It's a good one to experiment with.

                                                                          1. re: linguafood
                                                                            fldhkybnva Jul 27, 2013 03:30 PM

                                                                            Thanks, I whipped up a batch last night which tastes delicious. Just wondering, given that all the ingredients would live in the fridge anyway, it seems like you could store them in the fridge for a while without any consequence. Do you ever store your dressings for more than a week? It'd be nice to make big batches for 2 weeks or so.

                                                                            1. re: fldhkybnva
                                                                              linguafood Jul 27, 2013 03:32 PM

                                                                              Most of the time, I make just enough for the night, or have maybe a little leftover for a lunch salad the next day.

                                                                              That said, I have a mason jar with the buttermilk dressing in the fridge from.... umm, a while ago. I was hoping to make a BLT salad with it tomorrow, but I haven't checked if it's still good.

                                                                              I think up to 2 weeks should be ok, tho -- it might even say so in the recipe for the realtor's dressing....

                                                                              1. re: linguafood
                                                                                fldhkybnva Jul 27, 2013 03:52 PM

                                                                                Thanks, from what I've seen most say up to 1 week but I seem find that many things stay "fresh" longer than what a recipe or guidelines often suggest.

                                                                                1. re: fldhkybnva
                                                                                  linguafood Jul 28, 2013 11:25 AM

                                                                                  Dang. That means I'll hafta toss my half ball jar full of it -- it's been in there over 2 weeks.

                                                                                  But maybe I'll do a taste test first '-(

                                                                      3. l
                                                                        laskiblue Jul 9, 2013 11:32 PM

                                                                        I've had Trader Joe's Champagne Pear Vinagrette with gorgonzola a couple of times at a friend's house lately. It was very tasty.

                                                                        1 Reply
                                                                        1. re: laskiblue
                                                                          Njchicaa Jul 10, 2013 05:31 AM

                                                                          I wanted to love it but it was way too sweet for me.

                                                                        2. Jpan99 Jul 10, 2013 05:06 AM

                                                                          I would have to say blue cheese dressing. It's what got me eating salads in the first place. I hated salad, then I went to college and felt weird because everyone else ate salad. So I was in a restaurant and the house salad came with dinner and it was loaded with blue cheese dressing. I realized it was strong enough to mask the salad ingredients so that's how I ate salad for a very long time.

                                                                          Now of course I love salad and usually eat with a simple vinaigrette but I do still love blue cheese dressing when I eat at a restaurant.

                                                                          1. Bada Bing Jul 10, 2013 05:13 AM

                                                                            From commercial products, I find the Garlic Expressions ones to be pretty good. And for keeping in the fridge at my office, I find things like Kraft Zesty Italian passable. I'm not super-fussy. Even the "lite" version is good for weight-watching periods.

                                                                            At home, I can always make a decent vinaigrette salad dressing, but I never wow myself. It's one of those things I haven't mastered--kind of like how I cannot cook rice well without a rice cooker.

                                                                            One anecdote: without going into detail, I'll say that among my two grandmothers, one was a genuinely inhuman, callous and perhaps even evil person, but she made the best salad dressing I ever had. Some balance of sweetness, acid, herbs--I don't know how she did it. Made great pies, too. Go figure.

                                                                            My other grandmother, FYI, was the dearest person ever. Also made great pies.

                                                                            5 Replies
                                                                            1. re: Bada Bing
                                                                              Perilagu Khan Jul 10, 2013 07:48 AM

                                                                              "One anecdote: without going into detail, I'll say that among my two grandmothers, one was a genuinely inhuman, callous and perhaps even evil person, but she made the best salad dressing I ever had. Some balance of sweetness, acid, herbs--I don't know how she did it."

                                                                              She was probably in league with The Beast. ;)

                                                                              1. re: Perilagu Khan
                                                                                Bada Bing Jul 10, 2013 08:50 AM

                                                                                Nah, the Beast wouldn't dare approach her--unless salad was involved... :)

                                                                                1. re: Perilagu Khan
                                                                                  Jpan99 Jul 10, 2013 10:24 AM

                                                                                  I love a good evil granny story!

                                                                                  1. re: Jpan99
                                                                                    Firegoat Jul 10, 2013 10:30 AM

                                                                                    I have one. But she made the most sublime pan fried chicken every Sunday I'll give her a pass. If I ever find a Sunbeam electric fry pan like she used at a garage sale I am so buying it. I'm convinced that's the only way to fry an entire chicken. With Crisco.

                                                                                    1. re: Firegoat
                                                                                      Perilagu Khan Jul 10, 2013 12:24 PM

                                                                                      I'm sure you could find one of those Sunbeams on eBay.

                                                                                      Now my grandma, who was not particularly evil, although she was not quite as saintly as I believed when I was much younger, also made supernal yardbird, but she just used a regular cast iron skillet and a gas stove. What I wouldn't give to be able to duplicate that fried chicken.

                                                                              2. Firegoat Jul 10, 2013 05:18 AM

                                                                                The first dressing that ever got me to eat a salad with dressing was French. I still have a soft spot for French and Catalina dressings. (Also drizzled over cottage cheese). I also like almost any honey mustard dressing.
                                                                                For wings, I want blue cheese dressing.

                                                                                Only one I've found I really don't like is a Russian or Thousand Island.

                                                                                1. b
                                                                                  Beach Chick Jul 10, 2013 05:28 AM

                                                                                  Just got 2 new dressings from Mazretti's, Lemon vinaigrette and a Pomegranate vinaigrette...both are delicious.
                                                                                  Love Kens chunky blue and Bobs Big Boy too..

                                                                                  1 Reply
                                                                                  1. re: Beach Chick
                                                                                    Firegoat Jul 10, 2013 05:36 AM

                                                                                    Both of those Mazretti's sound good. I have not seen them in my market yet

                                                                                  2. JungMann Jul 10, 2013 07:17 AM

                                                                                    I always love and want ranch dressing on a salad, but I will settle for soy ginger.

                                                                                    1. l
                                                                                      laliz Jul 10, 2013 08:15 AM

                                                                                      sigh. Am I the only person in the universe who does not like/want Ranch /Dressing?

                                                                                      I love Bobs Big Boy Blue Cheese and Bobs Big Boy Thousand Island (I dip veggies in it and pour over cottage cheese)

                                                                                      I make dressings, but they don't ever thrill me.

                                                                                      3 Replies
                                                                                      1. re: laliz
                                                                                        fldhkybnva Jul 10, 2013 08:57 AM

                                                                                        I don't particularly enjoy Ranch but I'll eat it and it has it's moments for me but mostly for buffalo wings if blue cheese dressing is not an option or if it's all that's offered I don't particularly mind it.

                                                                                        1. re: laliz
                                                                                          biondanonima Jul 10, 2013 12:51 PM

                                                                                          Nope, I don't like ranch dressing either. I don't understand why anyone would choose it when blue cheese is sitting right next to it!!!!

                                                                                          1. re: laliz
                                                                                            e
                                                                                            escondido123 Jul 11, 2013 09:14 PM

                                                                                            I would never choose ranch dressing. Love creamy, but don't find that particular flavor appealing.

                                                                                          2. s
                                                                                            sedimental Jul 10, 2013 09:30 AM

                                                                                            I never buy bottled dressing but I will buy HV Ranch mix sometimes, the kind you mix with buttermilk. I love Ranch and consider it kind of a "treat". Ranch dressing is in the same food category as M&M's and Cheeto's around here. Mmmmm......

                                                                                            But, my favorite is homemade old school Roquefort, with sour cream, mayo, a splash of worcestershire sauce and plenty of minced shallots. Heaven.

                                                                                            Various soy/ginger/miso dressings and European vinaigrette style dressings are my daily dressings because they are healthier and pair more with my dinners.

                                                                                            1 Reply
                                                                                            1. re: sedimental
                                                                                              fldhkybnva Jul 10, 2013 10:30 AM

                                                                                              I am loving all the Roquefort dressings, why have I never tried this? I'm a blue cheese fanatic.

                                                                                            2. Karl S Jul 10, 2013 12:38 PM

                                                                                              For creamy dressing: cucumber or tzatziki sauce.

                                                                                              For vinaigrette: with shallots, with a balance of olive/walnut oils (too much olive overwhelms the flavor of greens unless it's a delicate Ligurian or Provencal olive oil), and either very good wine/sherry vinegar or fresh citrus juice for the acid.

                                                                                              The key, though, as with pasta, is that the dressing is a condiment, not the star; the star is not merely a vehicle for the sauce.

                                                                                              1. g
                                                                                                grumpyspatient Jul 10, 2013 01:45 PM

                                                                                                I really the Southwest dressing McDonlads offers with their salads, but not available retail, so I always ask for an extra package!
                                                                                                Not a ranch fan. usually have homemade oil/balsamic/shallot/mustard/fresh herb vinaigrette. like it on my tuna salad instead of mayo.

                                                                                                1. JonParker Jul 10, 2013 03:22 PM

                                                                                                  I remember liking Roquefort salad dressing when I was a kid, so after reading this thread I Googled some recipes.

                                                                                                  Most interesting was the New York Magazine recipe. It calls for, among other things, 1 cup sour cream, 1 cup mayo, 1/2 cup Roquefort cheese, and 1/2 cup parsley.

                                                                                                  According to the recipe, it makes 4 servings, which works out to 3/4 cup of dressing on each salad.

                                                                                                  http://nymag.com/listings/recipe/roqu...

                                                                                                  5 Replies
                                                                                                  1. re: JonParker
                                                                                                    alkapal Jul 10, 2013 05:38 PM

                                                                                                    yes! i'll have some lettuce with my dressing! ;-).

                                                                                                    1. re: alkapal
                                                                                                      t
                                                                                                      thistle5 Jul 10, 2013 05:52 PM

                                                                                                      As much as I like a good home made vinaigrette, I can also appreciate a good commercial dressing- I really like TJ's Greek style feta dressing, & since I was afraid it would be discontinued, I bought a few bottles...

                                                                                                      1. re: thistle5
                                                                                                        JonParker Jul 10, 2013 06:06 PM

                                                                                                        I used to do that, but over time I realized that I *always* liked homemade better than commercial.

                                                                                                        Fresh herbs and garlic, good olive oil, homemade mayo, heavy cream, fresh lemon juice -- the commercial stuff doesn't come close. Plus I can throw together a quick vinaigrette in less time than it takes to tear up the greens.

                                                                                                        1. re: thistle5
                                                                                                          alkapal Jul 10, 2013 06:06 PM

                                                                                                          oh, i've never had that one. will get some to add to my collection. their champagne vinaigrette is very nice, too.

                                                                                                      2. re: JonParker
                                                                                                        Perilagu Khan Jul 10, 2013 07:32 PM

                                                                                                        Back in those days, salads were roughly the size of Staten Island.

                                                                                                      3. d
                                                                                                        DatatheAndroid Jul 10, 2013 10:36 PM

                                                                                                        I LOVE the Newman's Own olive oil & vinegar dressing. Not only is it delicious, but I have some very fond memories of my preschool teacher who would give me this dressing with raw vegetables as a snack.

                                                                                                        1. c
                                                                                                          cstout Jul 11, 2013 09:36 AM

                                                                                                          Great post. Thought I would toss this little tidbit in for you to mull over while we hashing out which salad dressing is best.

                                                                                                          http://wellpreserved.ca/threee-tips-t...

                                                                                                          1. Firegoat Jul 11, 2013 09:41 AM

                                                                                                            I will post this on my mom's behalf. I've never known them to have anything in the fridge other than "Dorothy Lynch"

                                                                                                            2 Replies
                                                                                                            1. re: Firegoat
                                                                                                              alkapal Jul 19, 2013 04:04 AM

                                                                                                              what is dorothy lynch? or who?

                                                                                                              1. re: alkapal
                                                                                                                Firegoat Jul 19, 2013 10:02 AM

                                                                                                                It is a French "style" salad dressing. I'm not a huge fan, but that's pretty much the only option when I am eating at their home.
                                                                                                                They actually have a pretty cute website and lots of recipes, etc.

                                                                                                                http://www.dorothylynch.com/
                                                                                                                And there was a Dorothy Lynch. This is who she was from their website.
                                                                                                                Yes, there really and truly was a Dorothy Lynch. In the late 1940s, Dorothy and her husband ran the restaurant at the local Legion Club in St. Paul, Nebraska. This is where the original recipe for Dorothy Lynch Home Style Dressing was born. As the Legion Club members were introduced to this delicious recipe, the legend of Dorothy Lynch began to grow and the dressing fast became a "must-have" favorite. Stories of local people bringing their own bottle or jug to town to have it filled with "that delicious Dorothy Lynch salad dressing" were quite common.

                                                                                                            2. c
                                                                                                              cstout Jul 11, 2013 09:27 PM

                                                                                                              Green Goddess Dressing

                                                                                                              1 cup mayo (homemade is excellent)
                                                                                                              1/2 cup sour cream
                                                                                                              3 anchovy filets finely minced or 1 T paste
                                                                                                              1/2 cup finely chopped chives or green onion tops
                                                                                                              1/2 cup parsley chopped
                                                                                                              1 clove garlic, crushed
                                                                                                              1 T tarragon vinegar
                                                                                                              2 t lemon juice - fresh if possible
                                                                                                              1/2 salt
                                                                                                              coarsely ground pepper

                                                                                                              Combine & store in fridge

                                                                                                              5 Replies
                                                                                                              1. re: cstout
                                                                                                                fldhkybnva Jul 12, 2013 07:01 AM

                                                                                                                I vouch that this is amazing! How long do you store in the fridge?

                                                                                                                1. re: fldhkybnva
                                                                                                                  c
                                                                                                                  cstout Jul 12, 2013 08:05 AM

                                                                                                                  Gosh, never have kept it over 3 days, always used up by then. But I would guess 4-5 days. I don't like to keep any creamy salad dressing longer than that.

                                                                                                                  1. re: cstout
                                                                                                                    fldhkybnva Jul 12, 2013 08:29 AM

                                                                                                                    Yes, very true. There are only 2 of us and SO is not the biggest salad fan other than anything with Ranch so any recipe usually makes a lot for me. I usually halve it but still that can be quite a bit.

                                                                                                                    1. re: fldhkybnva
                                                                                                                      c
                                                                                                                      cstout Jul 12, 2013 05:11 PM

                                                                                                                      Perhaps you could cut this recipe down if it interests you enough - pretty easy to do.

                                                                                                                      I have the same problem with excess dressings, just because I go through binges, tastes so good, goes real fast so I make another batch & now I am bored.

                                                                                                                      This particular dressing goes fast though & I refrain from making another batch for quite a while & switch to something else. Such is life in the salad world, always in pursuit for some other taste.

                                                                                                                      1. re: cstout
                                                                                                                        fldhkybnva Jul 12, 2013 05:30 PM

                                                                                                                        True, I have been on a vinaigrette binge for a few months now which is why I'm looking for something different.

                                                                                                              2. o
                                                                                                                Orzo808 Jul 11, 2013 11:12 PM

                                                                                                                Kens Caesar dressing....my own good seasons you make from packets is not bad either. There is something to be said for plain old oil and vinegar, too!

                                                                                                                1. k
                                                                                                                  kitchengardengal Jul 12, 2013 02:37 AM

                                                                                                                  My all time favorite is my homemade blue cheese mayo/sour cream dressing with lots of raw garlic in it. You're supposed to let it meld a day or two before serving, but if you are impatient and have some on your salad right away, it has a wonderful primal earthiness that you can only get before the flavors meld. It's like having a whole 'nother dressing the next day. DH turned me onto the first-day flavor. He loved it so much, he blobbed almost a half cup onto his salad. I was horrified, and asked him, " do you know just how many calories were in that!?" He didn't care, it was that good.

                                                                                                                  1. EM23 Jul 12, 2013 11:25 AM

                                                                                                                    Jacques Pepin’s quick cream dressing is my favorite for greens, and is simply heavy cream, red wine vinegar, and s&p. I add a grating of garlic too. http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/590745#6179211
                                                                                                                    Marcella Hazan’s garlic scented vinegar is my favorite dressing for tomatoes. http://www.epicurious.com/recipes/mem...

                                                                                                                    2 Replies
                                                                                                                    1. re: EM23
                                                                                                                      linguafood Jul 12, 2013 12:55 PM

                                                                                                                      Wow, that is interesting. I've never thought of heavy cream in a salad dressing. Am I weird? :-)

                                                                                                                      I've used sour cream, yogurt, mayo, buttermilk and crème fraîche (often a combo of any of these times)... and sometimes even a dash of half an half, but heavy cream is new to me, as I generally only use it for pan sauces and such. Must try it cold.

                                                                                                                      1. re: linguafood
                                                                                                                        EM23 Jul 14, 2013 06:28 PM

                                                                                                                        I never considered hc as a dressing myself, but JP enlightened me. He said that it was his mother’s favorite dressing, and it has since become mine. It’s a treat compared to my everyday dressing of oil and lemon juice.

                                                                                                                    2. DonShirer Jul 14, 2013 06:49 PM

                                                                                                                      Honey Mustard or Raspberry Vinaigrette
                                                                                                                      (But I alternate with other dressings so as not to overdo the good stuff!)

                                                                                                                      1. s
                                                                                                                        Steve Jul 19, 2013 05:31 AM

                                                                                                                        Mustard vinaigrette.

                                                                                                                        Dislike bottled dressings across the board. And double dislike sweet dressings, so preemie strawberry vinaigrette would be anathema to me.

                                                                                                                        1. fldhkybnva Jul 19, 2013 07:37 AM

                                                                                                                          I made an awesome blue cheese vinaigrette last weekend for a skirt steak salad and will definitely be having it again this week. It was a nice variation to the usual blue cheese creamy dressing.

                                                                                                                          1. boyzoma Jul 19, 2013 09:47 AM

                                                                                                                            My favorite is Kraft Ranch with bacon. I love bacon. I also keep extra bacon bits in the fridge that I add as well. I usually like a creamy dressing on my salads.

                                                                                                                            1. b
                                                                                                                              BuildingMyBento Jul 19, 2013 12:49 PM

                                                                                                                              If extra virgin olive oil is absent, I'd choose something Japanese- roasted sesame and red shiso come to mind.

                                                                                                                              I've liked a rather spicy dressing at Ethiopian restaurants, though have no idea about the name.

                                                                                                                              http://buildingmybento.com
                                                                                                                              http://collaterallettuce.com

                                                                                                                              1. s
                                                                                                                                sisterfunkhaus Jul 20, 2013 06:22 PM

                                                                                                                                I make a really good creamy chipotle lime made with Greek yogurt. I also make a mean creamy Italian with a small hunk of raw onion blended in with the blender. I make a great blue cheese. As far as bottled goes, I have never found a better balsamic vinaigrette than Delmonico's bottles. It's fantastic.

                                                                                                                                1. w
                                                                                                                                  wandajune6 Jul 22, 2013 11:09 AM

                                                                                                                                  Really cheap thousand island dressing. Homemade never tastes as good. I like the stuff that comes in buckets and is nice and goopy. I try to avoid eating it because I know that it's toxic but admit to keeping a jar of the Lofthouse brand in my fridge for emergencies. (Emergencies mean the burning need for wedge salad with thousand island, black olives, bacon bits, and the possible addition of hard boiled egg.)

                                                                                                                                  I'm also a huge fan of Good Seasonings Italian, made with a nice fruity olive oil and a good balsamic dressing. It tastes like home and is incredibly versatile. Plus, it's wonderfully salty, something that I never seem to get right when I make homemade vinaigrettes.

                                                                                                                                  1. tcamp Jul 26, 2013 09:17 AM

                                                                                                                                    My go-to dressing is a vinaigrette with shallots and Dijon. I add herbs depending on salad type, mood and availability - oregano, chives, basil, thyme, etc.

                                                                                                                                    Next fav is blue cheese. The Realtors Buttermilk is delicious too. Made it last night for the first time and, yum.

                                                                                                                                    1. Gastronomos Jul 26, 2013 07:01 PM

                                                                                                                                      Creamy Feta:

                                                                                                                                      http://news.google.com/newspapers?nid...

                                                                                                                                      1 Reply
                                                                                                                                      1. re: Gastronomos
                                                                                                                                        JungMann Jul 27, 2013 09:24 AM

                                                                                                                                        This sounds great. Do you have a favorite recipe?

                                                                                                                                      2. l
                                                                                                                                        Londonlinda Jul 27, 2013 01:48 AM

                                                                                                                                        Walnut oil, cider vinegar, honey and dijon mustard - one of the contestants made it on Masterchef about 20 years ago and I have used it ever since.

                                                                                                                                        5 Replies
                                                                                                                                        1. re: Londonlinda
                                                                                                                                          c
                                                                                                                                          cstout Jul 27, 2013 06:17 AM

                                                                                                                                          Walnut oil dressing - please share the recipe. It sounds really good. Have never purchased walnut since I saw how pricey it is, but I will make an exception here. Thanks.

                                                                                                                                          1. re: cstout
                                                                                                                                            l
                                                                                                                                            Londonlinda Jul 27, 2013 06:42 AM

                                                                                                                                            With pleasure. I have made it so often I do it by eye, but I think it is:
                                                                                                                                            2 tablespoons walnut oil
                                                                                                                                            2 teaspoons cider or white wine vinegar
                                                                                                                                            I teaspoon Dijon mustard
                                                                                                                                            1/2 teaspoon runny honey
                                                                                                                                            Twist of black pepper, and salt if required. We don't use a lot of salt so don't find it needs it.

                                                                                                                                            All whisked together. I like a bit of bite in a dressing so it's a good rather than scant teaspoon of mustard.

                                                                                                                                            1. re: Londonlinda
                                                                                                                                              fldhkybnva Jul 27, 2013 03:28 PM

                                                                                                                                              I really enjoy walnut oil and usually do a quick vinaigrette with dijon, shallots, red wine and/or apple cider vinegar.

                                                                                                                                            2. re: cstout
                                                                                                                                              linguafood Jul 27, 2013 10:59 AM

                                                                                                                                              A few walnut vinaigrette recipes have been mentioned on this thread, btw '-)

                                                                                                                                              1. re: linguafood
                                                                                                                                                c
                                                                                                                                                cstout Jul 27, 2013 04:07 PM

                                                                                                                                                walnut salad dressings - yes, several have been mentioned & I have saved them to my salad folder, but one more recipe never hurts. Then it's kinda fun to look at them all & mix & match to come up with yet another recipe!.

                                                                                                                                                Thanks for pointing that out to me! When a fellow Chowhound takes the time to post a recipe on any one of these threads, I always C&P it. You folks are the best cooks anywhere & with all the junk floating around out on the net, it is so refreshing to come here & find these treasures, not to mention all the great tips & hints. Bless you all!

                                                                                                                                          2. h
                                                                                                                                            Harters Jul 27, 2013 09:54 AM

                                                                                                                                            Classic vinaigrette - oil, vinegar (or lemon), mustard.

                                                                                                                                            Although I'm often quite happy with a simple squeeze of lemon on a salad.

                                                                                                                                            1. RetiredChef Jul 27, 2013 11:47 AM

                                                                                                                                              I know I am in the minority but vinaigrettes seem to complement the flavor of lettuce and typical salad ingredients without distorting or covering them up. If mayo or sour cream is one of the top 3 components I won't touch it because they cover up to much of the taste rather than compliment it. I love salad but I want to taste it.

                                                                                                                                              3 Replies
                                                                                                                                              1. re: RetiredChef
                                                                                                                                                linguafood Jul 27, 2013 12:04 PM

                                                                                                                                                But sometimes it's about the dressing. I mean, wedge salad? Iceberg has practically no flavor, besides a little sweetness, so the blue cheese dressing is the main attraction.

                                                                                                                                                I'd also say that mayo dressing is essential for a BLT salad.

                                                                                                                                                But I agree with more flavorful greens like endive, radicchio, curled lettuce, arugula, etc etc, you really want the ingredients to shine and have the dressing/vinaigrette be a supporting act.

                                                                                                                                                1. re: linguafood
                                                                                                                                                  RetiredChef Jul 27, 2013 02:49 PM

                                                                                                                                                  Excellent point - I wasn't thinking outside of my little box.

                                                                                                                                                  Cheers

                                                                                                                                                  1. re: RetiredChef
                                                                                                                                                    linguafood Jul 27, 2013 02:51 PM

                                                                                                                                                    You mean salad bowl '-D (and I'm sure it's a big one!).

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