Tried & loved: homemade ranch dressing

I was stuck in a really tough spot.

I love ranch dressing. Maybe not every day, but sometimes life just calls for an herbaceous creamy dressing for a chopped salad or for dipping homemade french fries.

But I haven’t found ranch from a store that I liked and I hadn’t yet made at home what I can call ranch.

Store dressings are filled with preservatives and taste a lot more like mayo than herbs. Some have anchovies (not on my list, with the whole vegetarian thing).

But at home I’ve struggled to make something that tastes like ranch. My most successful attempt so far is what I would call a ranch vinaigrette. You see, I’m experimenting to find a way of using Greek yogurt and fresh herbs as the main ingredients in a dressing, eliminating the mayo. Maybe still adding some buttermilk for its unique taste.

But until I can figure out my perfect ranch (healthy, creamy, herb-y, ranch-y) here’s the next best I’ve found.

You see, this is not healthy. But it is lacking preservatives. And it tastes like fresh herbs. And it tastes like ranch.

Recipe link from the Pioneer Woman >> HERE.

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French pea & bacon gnocchi

Do you ever get tired of pasta?

True, it can be prepared a number of ways. With tomato sauce, with cream sauce, with fresh pepper and parmesan or served with vegetables.

But I turn to pasta so often. So here’s my answer when you want and don’t want pasta for dinner.

Gnocchi.

But not just any gnocchi. For this dish I add green peas and bacon (veggie bacon). For seasoning, herbs de provence.

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Tex-Mex bowl with Spanish rice and BBQ tofu

Tex-Mex started out as a nickname for the railroad that traveled between the America and Mexico (the train route was shortened on tickets). Now it serves as a nickname for American-Mexican hybrid dishes. More specifically with a Texas influence.

And wow, combining these two cuisines yields amazing results. Sweet hickory barbecue sauce with cumin-tomato Spanish rice. Yellow cheddar cheese with pico de gallo.

So here’s my take on Tex-Mex. A bowl filled with awesome.

Spanish rice, black beans, barbecue sauce-grilled tofu, cheddar cheese, corn and pico de gallo.

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