Sunday, January 23, 2011

Green(?) Goddess (with dressing recipe)

Is the Domestic Goddess going green? I'm doing the best that I can. We live in a very disposable, plastic society and being green does require some work. 

I've written about this a lot lately; it's not a new kick, but it seems like every time I get on the Internet, I find a link that motivates me to write. After reading about the floating plastic island (pointed out to me by my old cheerleading friend Joi), I've done everything I can to eliminate buying unnecessary, plastic items. I buy bigger packages so that the waste is less (one container instead of two), and when I buy drinks for upcoming events, I will buy things bottled in glass. 

For financial reasons, I will be handling my own lawn care, with the exception of mowing, which is something my neighbor's son has offered to do for $25 a pop. Looking through my gardener's former schedule of maintenance, I realized that my grass (which wasn't really that green anyway), was loaded with unnecessary, expensive chemicals. My town technically won't allow anything that is not organic to be applied to our lawns; we have five lakes in town and runoff is a concern. Yet I would bet that the stuff that my landscaper used was not organic. 

After starting to use my Evelyn Fields reusable unbleached cotton coffee filters, and shaking the grinds off of them and into the garbage twice a day, I realize that those grinds can be composted. Composted? Did I just say that? I never thought I'd be interested in composting, but after seeing images and videos of the plastic island, I feel that I have to do as much as I can to green my home. W's mom has a compost heap in her backyard, and my ex-husband and his wife have a composter. The idea wasn't foreign to me, it just screamed more work, more separating. I have a paper recycling bin, another for plastics and aluminum, and now a composter? I don't want to do it; I am compelled to do it. My waste is ridiculous. After sending an email to a friend asking how to begin composting, I saw this link (click here) online via Whole Foods. After reading it, and getting thoroughly grossed out by the worm bin idea, I've decided that I will be composting outside.

In this three minute Sierra Club video on how to compost (made in 2008), the on-camera personality says that we throw away 200 million pounds of trash per day. That's a lot of trash. I cannot guess if that number has grown or gotten smaller in these few years, but numbers floating around 200 million pounds a day isn't too promising.

There is a website called, How to Compost that has all sorts of tips and tricks for composting. While I am happy to get my hands dirty, I am going to choose the least wormy method possible. I want to have it tucked away in my yard, in a place that won't be too intrusive, but that's still close to the back door of my home. I have never seen W's mom's pile, in part because she has a vast, wooded yard, though it's more probable that she has it in a very inconspicuous place. 

Click here for a list of some things you can compost that might surprise you (latex balloons, shredded bills, hair from your hairbrush, moldy cheese, stale beer, plain cooked pasta, and that is just the beginning), courtesy of Planet Green.

And to reward you for your patience, here is a super easy recipe for Basil Green Goddess dressing by Ina Garten (with my modifications).

basil green goddess dressing
modified from Ina Garten's recipe


  • 1 cup good mayonnaise
  • 1 cup chopped scallions, white and green parts (6 to 7 scallions)
  • 1 cup chopped fresh basil leaves
  • 1/4 cup freshly squeezed lemon juice (2 lemons)
  • 2 teaspoons chopped garlic (2 cloves)
  • 2 teaspoons white vinegar
  • 2 teaspoons kosher salt
  • 1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 cup sour cream


Place the mayonnaise, scallions, basil, lemon juice, garlic, white vinegar, salt and pepper in a blender and blend until smooth. Add the sour cream and process just until blended. (If not using immediately, refrigerate the dressing until ready to serve.)

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