How to make delicious dressings, sauces, and gravy

Amish Dressing RecipesA good dressing can add zest to a salad, while a savory gravy adds rich flavor to meat, potatoes and vegetables, making a good meal great.  Amish cooks are masters of making tasty sauces, gravies, and dressings.  Enjoy the recipes below from Amish and Pennsylvania German sources.

Dressing Recipes

 
 
Gravy & Sauce Recipes

 
 
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CUCUMBER SALAD DRESSING

  • 2 thin-sliced cucumbers
  • 1 paper-thin-sliced onion
  • 1 thin-sliced green sweet pepper
  • 1 tsp. salt

Sprinkle 1 tsp. salt over the vegetables and refrigerate 2 or 3 hours. Rinse with cold water. You may need to rinse twice.

To make the dressing, you’ll need:

  • 3/4 cup cream or creamy style salad dressing
  • 1 tbsp. vinegar
  • 1 tbsp. sugar
  • pinch of pepper (optional)

Mix above ingredients together in a bowl.  Pour over the vegetables and serve cold. (adapted from Plain and Happy Living: Amish Recipes and Remedies by Emma Byler)

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WHITE SALAD DRESSING

  • 3 well-beaten egg yolks
  • 1 cup cream
  • 1 tablespoon flour
  • 1/2 cup vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon sugar
  • 1 teaspoon mustard
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil

Mix the dry ingredients together.  Next, slowly add the vinegar and oil. Stir in the cream and the beaten egg yolks.  Cook in the top of a double boiler until thick. (adapted from Pennsylvania Dutch Cook Book of Fine Old Recipes)

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“NO CALORIE” SALAD DRESSING

  • 1/2 tsp. cup wine vinegar
  • 1 clove garlic, crushed
  • 1 tbsp. fresh parsley, finely snipped
  • 1/4 tsp. oregano or tarragon
  • 1/2 tsp. salt or substitute

Shake above ingredients together well, and pour over salad. Keep dressing refrigerated. (adapted from Plain and Happy Living: Amish Recipes and Remedies by Emma Byler)

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PA DUTCH SALAD DRESSING

  • 2 hard boiled eggs, mashed
  • a little grated onion
  • 3 tablespoons salad oil
  • 1 tablespoon vinegar
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • pinch of pepper

Mix together well, then pour on lettuce.  Turn and stir lettuce until it is well-covered by the dressing. This dressing goes well with any green salad.

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HOT SALAD DRESSING

  • 1 tablespoon butter (or goose, chicken,  or bacon fat)
  • 1 teaspoon flour
  • 2 teaspoon sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon dry mustard
  • 1/8 teaspoon pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 cup vinegar
  • 1 egg yolk

Melt the shortening and blend in the flour. Add the vinegar; stir until the mixture thickens. Mix together the sugar, mustard, pepper and salt, and add to the liquid. Cook for 4 minutes. Pour the mixture over the beaten egg yolk and mix well. Return to the fire and cook for 1 more minute. (adapted from Pennsylvania Dutch Cook Book of Fine Old Recipes)

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MAYONNAISE DRESSING

  • 2 hard cooked yolks of eggs
  • 1 raw yolk of egg
  • 1/2 teaspoon mustard
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt (scant)
  • 2 teaspoons vinegar
  • Juice of one lemon
  • 1/2 cup olive oil Paprika

Mash and work smooth two hard-boiled egg yolks.  Using a tablespoon stir mustard together with the raw egg yolk, and work smooth. Add oil by the tablespoonful; when half the oil has been used, add vinegar and lemon juice (working them in very slowly).  Next add salt and paprika; slowly work in the remaining oil. You can use more mayonnaise, to do so continue to add oil, lemon juice and vinegar until you’ve almost doubled the original measurements. Use only a  tablespoon when working this dressing. (adapted from Pennsylvania Dutch Cook Book of Fine Old Recipes)

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POTATO SALAD DRESSING

  • 1 beaten egg
  • ½ cup sugar
  • 1 tbsp. flour
  • ½ cup water
  • ½ cup vinegar
  • 2 tbsp. butter
  • ½ tsp. salt
  • ¼ tsp. pepper

Combine ingredients in the order given above, stirring after each addition. Boil dressing until thick. Cool dressing before adding to the potato salad.

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CREAMY CUCUMBER DRESSING

  • 1 large cucumber
  • 1/2 cup sour cream
  • 1 tablespoon vinegar
  • Paprika
  • Salt
  • sliced onions or chopped chives (optional)

Pare a cucumber and slice it very thin, then place it into a bowl.  Next add salt and place it in the refrigerator.  After 2 hours, rinse cucumber thoroughly two or three times in ice cold water (press the cucumber slices between your hands each time to remove all salt).  After the final rinse, add the dressing, made as follows: Combine the sour cream with the vinegar and paprika and mix well. You may also add sliced onions or chopped-up chives if you like. (adapted from Pennsylvania Dutch Cook Book of Fine Old Recipes)

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FRUIT SALAD DRESSING

  • ½ cup sugar
  • 1½ tblsp. flour
  • 2 eggs
  • ½ cup pineapple juice
  • ½ cup lemon juice
  • 1 cup whipped cream

Combine the fruit juices.  Stir juices slowly into the flour and sugar. Cook, stirring constantly, until the mixture thickens. Add in the beaten eggs; cook for another minute. Let cool and then fold in the cup of whipped cream.

 

GRAVY AND SAUCE

TOMATO GRAVY

  • Stick of butter
  • 3/4 cups flour
  • 1 pt. tomato juice
  • 1 pt. water
  • salt
  • pepper
  • sugar

Melt stick butter and ¾ cups of flour. Then heat 1 pt. tomato juice along with 1 pt. water. Season with salt, pepper and a little sugar. This can be used on pancakes instead of syrup. (adapted from R&E Sales, Monroe, Indiana)

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HAM GRAVY

  • 1 quart water, divided
  • 1 ½ tbsp. ham base ( used Better Than Bouillon brand)
  • ¼ cup clear jel

Put 1 quart of water (minus ¼ cup) into a kettle. Bring to a boil. Stir¼ cup of water and ¼ cup of clear jel together. Once the water is boiling add in the ham base. Stir until ham base is dissolved. Keep the water at a low boil and slowly pour in clear jel mixture until the gravy has reached the preferred consistency.  Be sure to stir vigorously the entire time while adding, to prevent lumps from forming. If you want a thicker gravy, mix in more clear jel and cold water.  Then repeat the process until you get the thickness you want. This recipe makes 8 ½ servings. (adapted from Cooking & Such magazine, Winter 2011-12)

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DANDELION GRAVY

  • Dandelion greens (or lettuce or endive)
  • ½ pound Bacon
  • 2 tablespoons flour
  • 1 ½ cup milk
  • 1 tbsp. sugar
  • Salt to taste
  • Vinegar to taste
  • 2 hard- boiled eggs, diced

You can use as much finely cut-up dandelion greens, lettuce or endives as you like. Cut up the strips of bacon, place into a pan and fry. Use a portion of the drippings to make pan gravy.  Do this by adding your flour to the drippings and browning over medium heat. When it turns brown add milk, and stir constantly until the mixture comes to a boil and thickens.  Next add sugar, vinegar, and salt to your preference. Add the two diced eggs.  Before serving add dandelion greens. Dandelion gravy goes well over cooked potatoes. (adapted from The Vendor, April 21, 2010)

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PIZZA SAUCE

  • 3 gal. tomato juice
  • 1 cup sugar
  • ½ cup salt
  • 1 tbsp. paprika
  • 1 tbsp. chili pwd.
  • 1 tbsp. sweet Basil
  • 2 tbsp. garlic salt
  • 3-4 onions
  • 2 tbsp. oregano
  • 1 ½ tbsp. fennel seed
  • 1 ½ tbsp. thyme
  • 1 ½ tbsp. marjoram
  • 1 tbsp. Black Pepper
  • 2 ½ tbsp. Pizza seasoning
  • Parsley

Thicken the above ingredients using 4 ½ cups of Clear jel.  Can any sauce you don’t use. (adapted from R&E Sales, Monroe, Indiana)

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HORSERADISH SAUCE

This sauce goes well on corned or boiled beef.

  • 2 tblsp. butter
  • 2 tblsp. flour
  • 1 cup milk
  • ¼ cup grated horseradish
  • ¼ tsp. dry mustard
  • salt and pepper

Melt the butter, remove it from the heat and then stir in flour. Add the milk gradually (stir constantly until the mixture boils and thickens). Add salt and pepper and then cook for another 3 minutes. Add dry mustard and grated horseradish and blend together well. Keep hot using a double boiler. Pour on slices of corned or boiled beef.

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All-purpose gravy: Kelvin Beecroft/flickr
Unless otherwise noted, recipes adapted from Pennsylvania Dutch Cooking.

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