Wednesday, September 7, 2011

The Greek Salad Dressing Dilemma


A while back Sue and I went on a bit of a road trip to Chilliwack to visit a friend (Hi Shannon!) and do a bit of shopping. Shannon took us to a wonderful Greek Restaurant named Greek Islands Restaurant. The food was amazing and so reasonably priced it was crazy!
If you have the opportunity to go there you really must.
I insist.
Go.
Now.
Anyway, why I am sharing this is because it relates to the topic of this blog - Greek Salad Dressings.
The Greek Islands Restaurant had the MOST addictive Greek Salad Dressing on their Greek Salad. It was a creamy, garlic-y, not overpowering yet still extremely flavourful, blend of wonderfulness. Shannon warned us that we would be hooked and she was right. She said she and her girlfriends had tried many different variations on dressing recipes to try and duplicate the taste but had not yet succeeded. Sue and I decided to give it a try.
We found three different yet kind-of the same Greek Dressing recipes online and set out to make them with some changes to try and match the restaurant's flavour.
.

 Creamy Greek Salad Dressing
Ingredients
1/2 cup olive oil
2 Tbsp red wine vinegar
1 tsp sugar
2 garlic cloves, minced
1 tsp dried oregano
salt & pepper
1 Tbsp fresh dill
3/4 cup feta cheese, crumbled
3/4 cup buttermilk

Directions
In blender or food processor, whirl all ingredients together except buttermilk for one minute. With the blender (or food processor) running, slowly pour in buttermilk and blend until thick and creamy. Turn off your machine as soon as it thickens or the dressing may curdle.
Chill at least 1 hour so flavors blend. If it separates you can just give it a quick whiz in the blender again. (Will last 3 - 4 days in airtight container in fridge)


Feta Cheese Dressing
 
Ingredients
1/2 cup buttermilk
1/3 cup feta cheese, crumbled
2 Tbsp mayo
1 tsp mustard
1 clove garlic, minced
1/2 tsp dried oregano
pepper
 
Directions
In bowl, whisk all ingredients together. Chill for at least an hour.
(Can be refrigerated up to 5 days in airtight container)
 
 
 
Greek Dressing
 
Ingredients
1/2 cup cottage cheese
1/2 cup feta cheese, crumbled
1/2 cup buttermilk
1 clove garlic, minced
1/2 tsp grated lemon peel
1 tsp dried oregano
pepper
 
Directions
In container of blender or food processor, combine all ingredients. Blend until smooth, stopping and scraping sides as necessary. Chill for at least an hour.
 
 
Unfortunately we didn’t get the same results as from the Greek Islands Restaurant. (Boooo!)
These were all delicious in their own right but not quite what we were looking for. It’s all Shannon’s fault...we will now have to travel back to Chilliwack to get at that delicious salad and dressing. I’m thinking this may have been her plan all along to get us to visit more often.
If anyone out there knows the secret to Greek Islands Greek Salad Dressing then
please let us know.
PLEASE.
(We will beg if we have to.)
And, If you think that we may be exaggerating on how delicious this dressing really is then we challenge you to go to the Greek Islands Restaurant and try it out. They have locations in Abbotsford and Chilliwack.
P.S. – The other food was also delicious! I had the calamari and it was amazing. A huge plate of kalamari (their spelling) with rice, roasted potatoes, steamed veggies, pita & tzatziki, and Greek salad(or Caesar salad or soup – but trust me take the Greek salad) was only $11.99. (Crazy, right?)
I apologize for not taking a photograph. I guess I will have to go back and eat there again so I can get a photo for the blog.
It’s a legitimate reason to travel 3 hours there and 3 hours back.
Food is serious business.

17 comments:

  1. They were all tasty but I think I liked the second one the best! You didn't need that much to dress you salad...very yummy!

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  2. Thanks for Sharing your recipes, Thank you so much for sharing

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  3. You're welcome @john green :) We are glad you enjoy them!

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  4. I'm making one of these tonite for dinner......but I still think you should make a trip over for the real deal ;)

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  5. You can buy their Greek dressing at their restaurants...$4.46 for a fairly large container. I asked the owner and he said mayo is the base. I was concerned how high it is in calories. I figure the vegetables balance out the dressing ;)

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    1. Oh my Goodness! Really? I am DEFINITELY going to buy some the next time I go there :) I didn't even think to ask if you could buy it.... I am sure it is full of calories - usually the better tasting something is, the more calories it contains.

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  6. I love greek islands, supposedly the IGA in Abbotsford sells the dressing...so if you can't get the taste right then you can always get it there!

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    1. We will definitely have to check out the IGA - I love, love, love their dressing!

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    2. IGA doesn't sell Greek Islands dressing, they sell dressing from Rendezvous Restaurant. Although that dressing is pretty good, nothing compares to Greek Islands!

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  7. I'm pretty sure they sell redevous Greek salad dressing!

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  8. I am from Chilliwack I also love the dressing I have cut this recipe down to a household size and find it very close.
    I change a couple (in brackets)of things & it works
    recipe makes 3 3/4 quarts
    1 1/2 quarts olive oil
    1/3 cup garlic powder (garlic cloves)
    1/3 cup dried oregano
    1/3 cup dried basil
    1/4 cup pepper
    1/4 cup salt
    1/4 cup onion powder (onions)
    1/4 cup Dijon-style mustard
    2 quarts red wine vinegar
    (I add some sugar or Honey)
    Mix in a blender or food processer

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  9. There are 2 Greek Island Restaurants in Abbotsford! All owned by the same people. We like the one on Langdon St. In behind Taco Time on South Frazer Way

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  10. What if I don't have redwine vinegar? Will it taste just as good or will that make an impact?

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    1. It will make an impact but you could substitute regular vinegar. It won't be exactly the same but it will be similar.

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  11. I love love their Greek dressing I always asked for extra and embrassingly would attempt to scrape every last drop off the plate. Had it not been for the fact I was in public there would have been plate licking! Yum Thanx for the recipes to try - Tamara

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  12. They have opened one in Surrey too - on 152nd Street just south of 96th Avenue. It's the same owners, and the same food - delicious! You can purchase the dressing there as well.

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  13. I just found this restaurant with my in-laws they go to the Abbotsford location all the time...I too am hooked on the dressing and fortunately asked and took a container home with me but now I am running low and was going to try to make some. But I was thinking that it had a real balsamic flavour and I am wondering if that's the missing ingriediant in the above recipes? I will try to make the middle one and add a bit of balsamic and see how it goes. If anyone figures it out please let me know as it's a great way to eat more vegatables.

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