Green Goddess dressing is an iconic Californian dish that exudes the opulence of the Roaring Twenties. Born at the famous Palace Hotel in San Francisco and inspired by the well-known actor, George Arliss, Green Goddess has become a staple of the local food movement. It’s the Swiss Army knife of kitchen condiments…it can be a dressing for a salad, a dip for a radish crudité or the best sauce you’ll ever taste (in my humble opinion) on a turkey sandwich or BLT!
Traditionally it was a heavy sauce made from lots of mayo and sour cream but this recipe is lightened up with the addition of some tangy cultured yogurt, lime juice and handfuls of bright, green herbs. Any combination of soft herbs or greens will work…scallion greens, tarragon, mint, dill, basil or parsley are all good candidates. This recipe is also a great way to utilize any of those old, wilty greens in the back of the fridge. Spinach or pea tendrils would make super tasty variations.
The best thing about this recipe is how insanely easy it is to make. All you need is a high-speed blender. Jam all the ingredients into the top of the blender and whirl on high speed until the whole thing is smooth and the color of mint chocolate ice cream. It’s really that easy.
Have fun with it. The options are endless. Toss with boiled and peeled potatoes and chopped hard-boiled eggs for a delicious potato salad. Pick up a roasted chicken from your local market, pick off the meat and toss with romaine and chickpeas for an impromptu dinner.
3 cups Soft, green herbs (such as basil, parsley, scallions, chives, tarragon)
½ cup Mayonnaise (store bought is totally fine!)
½ cup Yogurt
2 Tablespoons Extra virgin olive oil
1 T Capers, rinsed & chopped
1 each Garlic clove
1 each Lemon
½ teaspoon Salt
Optional: hot sauce, chopped anchovies, fish sauce.
In the jar of a high-speed blender, add all the ingredients except for the garlic and lemon. Make sure to pick out any remaining herb stems.
With a microplane, grate the peeled garlic into the jar. Using the same microplane, grate the outside zest of the lemon into the jar.
Cut lemon the in half and juice into the blender jar, using a strainer to catch any lemon seeds.
Blend mixture until smooth and creamy and the dressing takes on a beautiful green color. If the dressing is too thick and you are having trouble blending it, add a few drops of cold water.
Taste and season with salt and lemon.
Michael Joyce is a chef in the Lehigh Valley and and local food advocate. Spending his career in kitchens devoted to seasonality and sustainability such as Blue Hill, Barbuzzo, and is currently at Bolete Restaurant. He believes that cooking through the seasons and as close to the source as possible, is not only satisfying and inspiring, but critical to the health of our local communities.