Invented at San Francisco’s Palace Hotel in 1923, in homage to a hit play of the same name, Green Goddess dressing also gets its name from its smiley-happy shade of celadon green, flecked with chives and parsley. Local food columnist Michael Bauer spotted a renaissance in effect, including this iteration by Prospect’s Ravi Kapur, who bolsters the dressing’s creaminess and color with an addition of avocado.
Though the spotlight may have moved on from its heady heyday, fans of creamy Caesar and buttermilk dressings will find much to love, the dressing’s lush base offset by bright notes of lemon and herbs. And as with the mighty Caesar, there are anchovies involved, which you can skip or substitute with Worcestershire sauce. (I didn’t have any tins of anchovies in the house and used a few splashes of Lea & Perrins to good effect.)
You can use your Green Goddess as a salad dressing, naturally, or as a dip for crudité, but it also makes a fabulous spread for BLTs or a club sandwich, and would taste divine (pardon the pun) with broiled crabcakes or dressing a summery Crab Louie salad, another delicious San Francisco invention.
Green Goddess Dressing
adapted from Ravi Kapur of Prospect’s recipe (as seen in the SF Chronicle), 2011
- 1/2 C avocado, chopped
- 1/2 C mayo or aïoli
- 1/4 C sour cream or Greek yogurt
- 1 Tbsp lemon juice
- 1/4 C fresh chives, chopped
- 3 Tbsp fresh parsley, chopped
- 1 tsp dried tarragon
- 2 tsp Worcestershire sauce
- 2 anchovy fillets, minced (optional; omit the Worcestershire if using)
- pinch of white pepper
- salt to taste
In a food processor, purée all the ingredients until smooth. (Thin out with a bit of water, if desired.) Serve as a salad dressing or dip for vegetables. Makes a little more than 1 1/4 cup.