Creamy basil dressing delights, warm or chilled

Julie Rothman / The Baltimore Sun /

Published Sep 11, 2012 at 05:00AM

Karen Hertwig, of Baltimore, was trying to locate a recipe for a creamy basil salad dressing like the one that was served at the original Perry Inn, in Perry Hall, Md. She said the restaurant changed hands, and the new owners no longer serve it. She said the dressing was served warm over a tossed salad topped with grilled chicken or steak. This one sounded like something worth pursuing, particularly given how robust my basil crop is this summer. I found what sounded like a great, low-fat recipe for a creamy basil garlic salad dressing on the recipe blog writes4food.com, by Bryn Mooth, of Cincinnati, Ohio.

Mooth said she created this recipe to complement a salad with chicken, wild rice and other good things, but when she tasted it, she “immediately thought of about a zillion other uses for it.” She said that while she has not tried the dressing served warm, she sees no reason why it wouldn't be equally delicious. I whipped up a batch and tested the dressing both warmed and chilled on a simple salad of butter lettuce and sliced avocado as Mooth suggested, and it was fresh-tasting and delightful either way.

Recipe requests

Karin Blood, of Center Point, Iowa, is looking for a chili recipe that was on the wrapper of Aldi's brand canned tomatoes. It had ground beef, onion, green pepper, crushed tomatoes, stewed tomatoes, tomato sauce, kidney beans and pinto beans. She said it was really good and healthy and practically all vegetables.

Bev Hannon, of Marion, Iowa, is looking for meatball recipe that she says her husband's family — he is of Belgian descent — used to make. He recalls his mother using both beef and pork and possibly cabbage. He thinks they may have been called “Frikdels.” Sadly, all his family is deceased now, so there is no one to ask.