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Green Goddess Dressing

post #1 of 22
Thread Starter 
The original version of this recipe is an impromptu, which means it was created by a particular chef to commemorate a particular person, place or event. It was created at the Palace Hotel in San Francisco in 1924, by chef Philippe Roemer in honor the English actor, Philip Arliss, who was appearing in the eponymous play.

The dressing was an immediate hit, and was wildly popular into the sixties when it disappeared – about the same time “Ranch” dressing began its ascendancy. I’m not saying the events are connected, but motive, means, opportunity and qui bene?

No doubt, one of the reason Green Goddess dropped off the radar is the anchovy paste. When made with anchovies the dressing has no taste of fish. What they add is salt and a background note of “savoriness,” something the Japanese call umami. You’ve got my permission. If you think anchovies are “icky,” just forget them. If you’ve got an open mind, give them a try.



GREEN GODDESS DRESSING

(Makes 3 Cups)


Ingredients:
1-1/2 cups mayonnaise
1-1/2 creme fraiche, crema fresa or sour cream
2 tbs Chinese rice vinegar
1 tbs lemon juice
1 or 2 cloves garlic, minced very fine.
(Optional) 2 tbs anchovy paste, or 8 minced anchovies
1/3 cup minced parsley
1 scallion, white and green parts, chopped; or replace with an extra 2 tbs chives
2 tbs minced chive or garlic chive
(Optional) 1tbs fresh tarragon, or 1/2 tsp dried
Salt
Fresh, coarsely cracked pepper

Technique:
Mince the dry ingredients, except salt and pepper, and put them in a mixing bowl. Add the wet ingredients, the salt and pepper and combine all ingredients by whisking in a bowl. Or, add the garlic and anchovies to a processor and pulse into a paste. Add the onions and herbs and pulse until minced fine.

May be served immediately or reserved in the refrigerator to allow the flavors to marry. The dressing peaks after an hour; may be kept several days.

Serve over any type of salad. Especially good with simple lettuce salads, artichokes, and shellfish.

Notes:
The changes from the original include the addition of creme fraiche or crema fresa; an increase in the amount of herbs; the addition of scallion (for a more straightforward onion taste) to the chives; addition of tarragon; and use of actual garlic.

Chef Roemer created Green Goddess with all mayonnaise and no sour cream, creme fraiche or crema fresa. These make the dressing less oily, lighter (if you can imagine creme fraiche making something lighter), more luxurious, and tangier. The addition of sour cream probably occurred in the forties. As far as I know, creme fraiche or crema fresa are original with me. Green Goddess had fallen well out of favor by the time creme fraiche began its American ascendancy. Crema fresa is still under-appreciated as an ingredient in the mainstream. Fortunately, it’s underpriced as well.

At some point, probably in the fifties, tarragon became important. If you choose to lose it, consider yourself a classicist.

Back in the day American and English considered garlic as decidedly de trop. For one thing it was considered too spicy; and for another, “too ethnic.” So, chefs hinted at garlic rather than using it forthrightly by such expedients as rubbing the bowl with a garlic clove or using garlic flavored oil. You will occasionally see recipes that still limit garlic in this way. In case you wondered what that was all about, now you know. It’s a relic of timid and bad taste. My general suggestion is to use an adequate amount garlic in normal way. This Green Goddess recipe calls for just enough garlic to sing harmony, don’t put so much in it grabs the mike.


BDL

____________

As always, should you choose to share this recipe with anyone else please credit it to me, Boar D. Laze. If you're of a mind to mention my eventually forthcoming book, COOK FOOD GOOD; American Cooking and Technique for Beginners and Intermediates, I would consider it a kindness.

When you have the chance, take a look at the COOK FOOD GOOD blog. Lots to jeer at, and your chance to get even.
post #2 of 22
I like anchovies. There are a couple of brands that are imported from Italy and which are packed in small glass jars that are pretty good. One comes with black truffle pieces in the olive oil. Not bad at all ...

scb
post #3 of 22
crema fresa = crema fresca, o algo otro?
Just curious, what would you substitute for the Chinese rice vinegar?

scb
post #4 of 22
Thread Starter 
Shel,

Distilled white, cider, more lemon juice, anything that wouldn't screw with the colors.

I was thinking about this recipe while proofreading the copy, and despairing over formatting issues -- and it occurred to me there was a certain symmetry in the way we, as a society of gourmands, have come to appreciate garlic while losing our affection for anchovies. What's up with that?

BDL
post #5 of 22
Gotta bail on the tarragon personally. I find it overpowering.
Palace of the Brine -- "I hear the droning in the shrine of the sea monkeys." Saltair
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Palace of the Brine -- "I hear the droning in the shrine of the sea monkeys." Saltair
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post #6 of 22
OK - I was having a hard time imagining the dressing with the black or the red vinegars. So Chinese white would be the first choice ...

Don't know - never really thought abput it. Perhaps the loss of affection for anchovies has something to do with the general low quality and poor taste of what's usually found in the supermarkets these days. Compared to what can be had in the specialty shops, the more readily available tinned anchovies taste awful and have a cardboard-like texture.

scb
post #7 of 22
Thread Starter 
Tarragon isn't actually part of the original recipe. There was a remark about omitting it in the "Notes" section, but I guess it got lost. Gei gezundt, bruder.

BDL
post #8 of 22
Interesting question. I've always been a big fan of both. A deli I frequent has started carrying a new brand of anchovies packed in salt instead of oil, meant to buy some saturday, they are closed on sunday. So a minor adjustment to the dinner recipes, no big deal, I'll stop by monday. I was looking forward to trying them because, as Shel said, readily available anchovies just aren't that good these days.

Are average eaters becoming afraid of flavor?

mjb.
Food nourishes my body.  Cooking nourishes my soul.
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Food nourishes my body.  Cooking nourishes my soul.
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post #9 of 22
Salt pack are very nice ... takes a little getting used to, but - we'll, you'll see for yourself :lips:

http://ericademane.com/2008/08/12/on...y-isnt-enough/

scb
post #10 of 22
Yes, indeed. Margaret Fox (Cafe Beaujolais, Mendocino) had a couple of very rich chocolate desserts that used creme fraiche or whipped cream to lighten them and cut their richness. One was her Mocha Fudge Almond Pie. Man, was that gooood!

scb
post #11 of 22
I was not aware, exiled as i am, that anchovies went out of favor. That's a shame, they really add a lot, esp in surprising places - lamb stew with lemon and garlic and anchovy - the anchovies melt and disintegrate on cooking - or pasta aglio, olio, anchovies and tuna - quite yummy, and again, they disintegrate. I would suggest that people use them but NEVER mention that they did. Used with discretion no one'll never know.
Salt-packed anchovies are, I believe, the "real" preserved anchovies. Here in Rome there is usually an old lady at every street vegetable market with a huge can of them who sells them by number ("how many do you want? three? four? five?") and wraps them in paper. You take them home, pull out the spine, wash off the salt and there they are. They;re particularly good when you want a piece of tasty fish rather than a sauce - like on a pissalidiere (oh my god) or on salade nicoise.
The ones preserved "under oil" "sott'olio" are these, pre-spined, pre-washed and covered in oil. (Unfortunately, usually really crappy oil). But there's something about the salt fish, simply washed, that is amazing. One of my favorite sandwiches is a piece of good fresh homemade crusty bread folded over a couple of these anchovies. It's all flavor.
"Siduri said, 'Gilgamesh, where are you roaming? You will never find the eternal life that you seek...Savour your food, make each of your days a delight, ... let music and dancing fill your house, love the child who holds you by the hand and give your wife pleasure in your embrace.'"
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"Siduri said, 'Gilgamesh, where are you roaming? You will never find the eternal life that you seek...Savour your food, make each of your days a delight, ... let music and dancing fill your house, love the child who holds you by the hand and give your wife pleasure in your embrace.'"
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post #12 of 22
Hers my generic version of GG. Just a made up one for my skirt steak salads.

3 cups mayo or Aoli

3 cups Sour Cream
½ cup Lemon Juice
1 bunch parsley
2 bunch green onions
1 bunch Taragon
16 each Anchovies in Oil

¼ cup Taragon Vinager

Salt & Pepper to taste.




This makes a six pan. ....Powerful stuff! LOL!


Ill try yours next week. Thanks!
post #13 of 22
I've always loved Green Goddess-even as a kid with that yucky bottled stuff my Mom would haul out.
But since learning to make it fresh, I love it even more!

Stars restaurant in SF used to make a lovely lunch of smoked salmon with sliced avocado, beautiful greens and GG dressing. Man that was good-light and beautiful too!

The anchovy is an absolute necessity:) and I really like it with tarragon. If used in a subtle way they both give a rich complexity to the blend of herbs and onion flavors.
It's one of those flavor combos where balance is really key, and if anything makes too strong a statement, the whole thing suffers.

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www.foodandphoto.com

Liquored up and laquered down,
She's got the biggest hair in town!

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post #14 of 22
The two are certainly different, but each has a place. As long as you can get the best quality in each style, the results can be quite satisying, especially when used in an appropriate dish.

shel
post #15 of 22
shel,
yeah, i wasn't being snobby about the salted kind, and i use the oil-packed kind for sauces and stuff, but originally salted ones were made at home (actually my mother in law and her friends at the beach began making them themselves some years ago) and are the older form, more traditional and pre-canning era. You clean and wash the anchovies and put them in layers in a crock with salt and keep adding as you get more - the crock is not sealed - I think cleaning them of the bones and preserving them in oil was a further step that made it a "convenience food" in a sense, though old and well-established. And as i say, unfortunately these are usually preserved in a really crappy oil.
The oil ones are the ones that disintegrate well when you make a sauce, but the salted ones, because you wash them and all, are milder tasting and have the consistency you can bite into, and for eating, on top of soemthing or in something (pissalidina, for instance, or nicoise) are special, and worth finding. Being mild, you can actually EAT them rather than use them as garnish.
"Siduri said, 'Gilgamesh, where are you roaming? You will never find the eternal life that you seek...Savour your food, make each of your days a delight, ... let music and dancing fill your house, love the child who holds you by the hand and give your wife pleasure in your embrace.'"
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"Siduri said, 'Gilgamesh, where are you roaming? You will never find the eternal life that you seek...Savour your food, make each of your days a delight, ... let music and dancing fill your house, love the child who holds you by the hand and give your wife pleasure in your embrace.'"
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post #16 of 22
Oh, I didn't think you were being a snob - that's my job :lol:

I like to eat the oil packed anchovies, but more as a snack than as part of a main dish. Sometimes munching on one while preparing a sauce is enjoyable, plus it gives me an idea of the strength and flavor of the fish in that batch, allowing for some adjustments in the recipe. They're very good on pizza and in sauces, IMO

I've yet to find a really good quality salted anchovie. Have recently tried a couple but found them a little harder than expected and somewhat dry. In all honesty, since the salted version is somewhat new to me, I'm still unsure of what to look for and to expect. Still on the learning curve. Any suggestioons?

shel
post #17 of 22
When fishing, has anyone ever caught a Sardine or Anchovy???????
CHEFED
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CHEFED
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post #18 of 22
Someone must... - half the seaside restaurants of Spain and Portugal would close without the sardines caught by locals!
post #19 of 22
I don;t know about different varieties, but the trick is to wash them well, and maybe even soak a little if they're too hard or dry. I take out the spine over the sink (by splitting lenghthwise with my fingers and pulling the spine by the front end. It should lift out of the fish and leave the flesh behind.) Then I run water over them one by one as i rub off the salt, and pull off the fins and outside thin hairlike bones (what are they called i wonder), and usually that water is enough to rehydrate them, but if they're really dried out, you can put them in a little dish as you finish, with a little water, and let them sit a bit before using. The big problem in my mind is that half of them are gone before i'm done because i can;t resist eating them.

I guess i would say that if it's really hard to pull out the spine and lots of flesh comes away with it, they;re too dry. Try another brand.
I'm curious, how are they sold there? Here you buy at the market or at a small grocery store where they have huge cans of them, and they pull out as many as you want, but some supermarkets now have them in jars for home use. In the store usually there's a good turnover so they never dry out much after the can is opened, but they can. I also suppose they can dry out too much before canning.
"Siduri said, 'Gilgamesh, where are you roaming? You will never find the eternal life that you seek...Savour your food, make each of your days a delight, ... let music and dancing fill your house, love the child who holds you by the hand and give your wife pleasure in your embrace.'"
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"Siduri said, 'Gilgamesh, where are you roaming? You will never find the eternal life that you seek...Savour your food, make each of your days a delight, ... let music and dancing fill your house, love the child who holds you by the hand and give your wife pleasure in your embrace.'"
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post #20 of 22
Thread Starter 
In the US, even dry, salt-packed anchovies are usually sold skinned and filleted -- and usually only in import specialty stores and "gourmet" delis. (Although I'm sure the Berkeley Northside 7-11 carries them.) They are also usually smaller than the anchovies you see in Europe. Not that there aren't exceptions like Roque (French) and a few others. The best anchovies I've ever had in the U.S. are Spanish, caught in the Cantabrian, packed in oil and sold in jars and occasionally tins. The brands I remember offhand are L'Escala and Ortiz, but there are others. These are expensive. Too expensive for most people to use minced or melted to merely add body, but certainly worth it if they're significant enough to be seen.

If you like anchovies, try boquerones. Great tapas.

BDL

PS The little, hair-fine bones are called "pin bones." Except for the largest anchovies, they're usually just left with the fish because of the difficulty in removing them.
post #21 of 22
I've had the Ortiz anchovies - they are now selling for around $18.00 a jar in various locations around these parts. Tre cher! There's also Rizzoli Filetti di Alici at around the same price point, although there's a tin that's less expensive than the glass. Excellent quality - packed in EVOO. A reasonable alternative, especially considering the price differential, is Flott. There's another brand that I've tried at the same price point, but I cannot recall what it is. I tried Roland - FEH! Don't buy 'em.

I've gotta try the boquerones. Thanks for the tip.
post #22 of 22
Not so much sardines anymore but theres plenty of Anchovy and Herring in San Fransisco Bay. We catch them on tiny baitless brass colored hooks called sabiki rigs. You can catch a 5 gallon bucket in about an hour from a few piers in the city. But we dont eat these, Although some do. We use them for Halibut and Striped Bass bait!
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