veggies

Sunflower Ranch Dressing. MUST CREDIT: Photo by Tom McCorkle for The Washington Post.

When salad season heats up, one thing keeps my kitchen humming: a good homemade dressing. Sure, I’ll throw together a makeshift vinaigrette here and there, combining the bits from almost-used jars of condiments with vinegar and oil. I also adore creamy dressings — green goddess, ranch and the like — that typically take a little more thought.

A traditional recipe for one of the latter is all well and good, but when I want an alternative to a mayonnaise- or buttermilk-base, I get creaminess by including nuts (cashews are classic) in the blend. Still, I hear often from readers who want nut substitutes because of allergies.

That’s where Terry Hope Romero’s new salad cookbook comes to the rescue, particularly with a recipe for Sunflower Ranch Dressing. She has you soak raw sunflower seeds and blend them with nondairy milk and a handful of other ingredients, including a good dose of garlic and some fresh herbs.

The punch of garlicky flavor is at home anywhere a traditional ranch would be: Salad greens top the list, naturally, but drizzle or dollop this on any combination of vegetables — try it on baked potatoes, white or sweet — and you’ll be happy.

— Adapted from “Show Up for Salad” by Terry Hope Romero

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