Monday, March 1, 2010

Chef Salad and My Fav Ranch Recipe

Well, maybe you noticed a change in my blog recently? Maybe not? Maybe my mom is the only one who reads this? That's fine.

Bottom line, I have been traveling over the past week. So, I have been posting old stuff and not been posting the weekly food plan. Even though I do have a plan for this week, I ain't posting it because it is a short week. And you know, I don't feel like it.

I spent the last week at a conference in Portland, OR. I had a GREAT time. I got to spend some time with my aunt, met some of her friends, took an amazing dance class with her, and saw a little bit of Portland. I also enjoyed the conference and got a lot of good feedback on my research. This past weekend I was in Northern WI (where it was surprisingly warm), to see Scot win the Birkie (and all the other fam). And he pretty much did! So proud. We also got to spend some time with his family and my best friends ever. Maybe I will do a post later with some of the highlights.

Anyways, whenever I travel, I can't wait to get home to start eating home cooked meals. And I always tend to crave light food and vegetables. Tonight, we had a chef salad. Nothing fancy. Just romaine lettuce with a bunch of chopped veggies (I used carrots, celery, tomatoes, cucumbers, red peppers) with cheese (cheddar) and deli meat (turkey).

I like Ranch dressing with my chef salad. I cannot stand bottled Ranch. Makes me want to vomit. I have tried every brand that has ever existed and something about bottled Ranch does not do it for me. I did some research once on how restaurants make Ranch, because I almost always love restaurant Ranch. What I found was that many restaurants use Hidden Valley Ranch seasoning and make according to the package dressing. They come in little packets and you just mix 1 cup of mayo with 1 cup of milk and 1 packet of the HVR seasoning packet. And let me tell you, it tastes JUST like the restaurant Ranch. And it tastes nothing like the thick, clumpy HVR you can buy in a bottle. I prefer Hellman's Mayo (not light). I suppose you could use whatever you want, but the real mayo is the trick. It takes about 30 minutes to thicken in the fridge, but I like it thin, so I don't mind using it right away.

Lastly, good news, my ankle is pretty much better. I went back to basketball tonight and it went well. Although, I think I made about 2% of my shots. Must have been the ankle.

Really what I wanted to tell you, is that Scot came to watch. Someone left early, and we were down a man (/woman, since it is an all women's league). Guess who played with all girls? Scot! Haha. It is kind of a general trend in Scot's life. No one knows why. He did alright, kept up with us ok. Actually, it is kind of irritating how basketball really isn't his thing and he is still really good at it. Someday I will beat him at something...someday.

Stay tuned this week for eggplant pizza with corn and chickpea salad, turkey strombolis and split pea soup with homemade croutons!


  1. So when you make this ranch do you keep it in your fridge for a while? How long does it last? Also have you seen Pioneer Woman's ranch dressing on her website? It has about 3 million ingredients, but it must be good because I've seen it on other websites too. And it's from Pioneer Woman.

  2. Yeah, it keeps in the fridge for 1 month. I think it says so on the HVR package. The recipe is also on the package. Just make sure to get the dressing packets and not the dips packets. A mistake I have made more than once.

    I have seen PW's recipe. I also forgot to mention that before finding this HVR recipe, I tried out tons of homemade Ranch recipes with a million ingredients and never liked any of them. I am tempted to try hers, though.

  3. wait, what's the change in your blogg?

  4. Is the change that you didn't tell us you were leaving so we all went though food blog withdrawal? I don't like bottled ranch, but love the restaurant stuff, so will definitely have to try this method sometime!

  5. cindy-i just meant that i wasn't posting as much and didn't post meal plans. also, i was posting recipes but not necessarily meals. you know, because i was traveling.

    erin-hi! i did leave without notice, what was i thinking??? trying to be sneaky. let me know if you like it!!! i love a fellow bottled Ranch snob!