The popular salad dressing known as Ranch has been a staple in American cuisine for over half a century. Whether it’s used to dip vegetables or spread onto pizza, nearly everyone knows and loves the creamy and tangy flavor of this dressing. But one particular question that remains of great interest is who exactly invented Ranch dressing.
There have been various claims on the origin and invention of ranch dressing since its first debut in California at Hidden Valley Ranch, owned by Steve Henson and his wife Gayle. One rumor persists is that ranch was invented by a black man named Kenneth Henson.
Kenneth Henson was a cook from Thibodaux, Louisiana who moved to Alaska in the 1950s to work in the fishing industry. While working there, he came up with the idea for what we now know as “Ranch” because he found ketchup too sweet tasting against fish sticks, which kids loved so much back then but were not willing to eat without dip-sauce accompaniment. So he mixed mayonnaise with some dry herbs like parsley, chives etc., garlic powder, salt pepper and voila! He had stumbled upon something truly delicious.
According to documents obtained by Thrillist journalist Jeff Wilser through an oral history interview with Gayle Henson before her death in 2013 (which she did not want published during her lifetime), Ken’s original formula included mayonnaise—though how much mayo is unclear—as well as skim milk solids (whatever those are).
However ,those ingredients weren’t readily available when Steve Henson created his version two decades later; instead he turned to other common ingredients that could easily be found: Buttermilk Lemon Juice Vinegar Salt Worcestershire Sauce Dried Parsley Onion Powder Garlic Powder Black Pepper Paprika
This was widely circulated through newspapers across America making people believes Kenneth “Ken” Rudolph Hessan II actually created ranch; but based off all the sources we’ve found online, Kenneth “Ken” Rudolph Hessan II never existed.
The name “Ranch” was not used by Ken Henson or even Steve Henson. It was a nickname given to the delicious dressing that became popular with their customers at Hidden Valley Ranch. However, due to the success of Hidden Valley’s Ranch Dressing in the 1960s, many imitations soon followed as other companies tried creating their own spin on it.
Despite all these varying stories and rumors about who created ranch dressing, what can be confirmed is that it originated from Hidden Valley Ranch in California where Steve and Gayle Henson ran a guest ranch which offered horseback riding activities for their patrons. They would regularly serve their guests homemade spicy buttermilk salad dressing on top of lettuce greens harvested from local fields.
The popularity of this special cowboys’ dip continued to grow until in 1954 when they decided to move forward with mass-producing and bottling it as well as other flavors such as French Onion,Dill & Bacon flavored dressings . The rest is history as Hidden Valley’s Ranch became widely recognised across America; spreading regionally past its host state then eventually globally .
In conclusion , while there’s no evidence supporting that Kenneth Ken Rudolph Hessan II invented ranch dressing aside from hearsays emanating through newspapers from decades ago; What we do know is that nobody knows for sure who originally came up with ranch dressing or how exactly its recipe evolved over time into what we enjoy today – But one thing remains certain- Everyone loves dipping!
The ubiquitous dressing known as Ranch has been a fixture in American cuisine for over 50 years, loved for its creamy and tangy taste. Whether it’s used to dress salads or as a dip for vegetables, pizza, chips and more; there is no denying the popularity of this beloved sauce.
However, one question still lingers amongst fans of this condiment – who actually invented Ranch dressing? Despite various claims on the origin and invention of ranch dressing since its first introduction in California at Hidden Valley Ranch by Steve Henson and his wife Gayle; some rumors persist about a black man from Louisiana named Kenneth Henson being the true inventor of this staple.
Kenneth Henson was an Alaskan cook who had worked with fish sticks popular among kids back in the day but found ketchup too sweet tasting against them. He went ahead to mix mayonnaise with some dry herbs like parsley, chives etc., garlic powder, salt pepper hence stumbling upon something truly delicious which would come to be known as “Ranch.”
Based off evidence obtained through an oral history interview with Gayle Henson before her death in 2013 (which she did not want published during her lifetime), Ken’s original formula included mayonnaise—though how much mayo is unclear—as well as skim milk solids (whatever those are). However ,those ingredients weren’t readily available when Steve Henson created his version two decades later hence him turning to other common ingredients that could easily be found such as buttermilk, Lemon Juice,Vinegar Salt Worcestershire Sauce Dried Parsley Onion Powder Garlic Powder Black Pepper Paprika.
Despite the widely circulated claims through newspapers across America making folks believe Kenneth “Ken” Rudolph Hessan II actually created ranch; multiple reports suggest he never existed based on all sources found online today.
The name “Ranch” wasn’t even coined by Ken nor even Steve at first.It was simply a nickname given to the delicious dressing that became popular with their guests once introduced at Hidden Valley Ranch property which offered outdoor activities such as horseback riding and meals for patrons off of freshly harvested greens during harvest seasons.
But it wasn’t until 1954 when they mass-produced and bottled their most popular salad dressing flavors including ranch,dill, French Onion, and Bacon; that Ranch Dressing took America by storm; making Hidden Valley’s Ranch an icon for salad dressings across America even globally.
Conclusion? While there is no conclusive evidence pointing towards who actually created ranch dressing or how exactly its recipe evolved over time into what we enjoy today – One thing remains certain – everyone loves dipping!