04/24/07 Free Ranch! I've been getting
lots of free ranch lately thanks to the Hidden Valley Heroes contest. I
thought I was just going to get the initial package, but over the last
few weeks they've sent me more recipes, packets and even bottles of
ranch! How cool is that? The recipes look good, I need to try some of
them soon. Check out the Ranch
Collection section of the Image
Gallery for photos of all the cool stuff they've sent me.
of the Image
Gallery. I've added a new album called Ranch
@ Work. The other day Sam, Guy and I went around the place we
work and photographed ALL of the ranch on site. Those of you that work
in 1-2 refrigerator offices may not think this is all that exciting,
but the place we work has 14 break rooms
with 24 refrigerators! We found that some
fridges had a lot of ranch, and some had very little to none. One
interesting thing we noticed is that the break rooms that had 2
refrigerators NEVER had ranch in the left refrigerator, only in the one
on the right. Isn't that bizarre? Anyway, check out what kind of ranch
people eat at my work here!
may have also noticed that the Ranch Fund has increased again. Check
out the Ranch Fund page
to see the details of the most recent donations.
02/08/07 New Updates! Lots of new updates today to make up for the months of slacking. Thanks to everyone who wrote in with updates for the Ranch Map. I received updated info for Chile, Kuwait and Russia, so check out the Ranch Map to see if you can get ranch in those countries. I believe I am up to date on Ranch Map submissions, so if you sent one in and it's not on the map, it may have been eaten by my old spam blocker. Please resend it and I will get it added.
In other news, I was one of the lucky winners of the Hidden Valley Heroes contest! (see the previous news item for details) I got a shirt, a veggie charm bracelet, a bunch of ranch and lots of great recipes. I'll share my favorites as soon as I make them.
I'm working on a FAQ and will post that soon. I wasn't going to post it until it was done, but as I work on it I keep coming up with questions and I think I could do it forever. I think I'll just finish up what I got and add more over time (and as you send them in). Here is a taste of what I got so far - FAQ. Feel free to send in your own questions!
12/17/06 Hidden Valley Heroes contest and new recipes - Check out some great new recipes from Food Network celebrity chef Tyler Florence on the recipes page. Also, check out a new contest from Hidden Valley called Hidden Valley Heroes. They are looking for 100 people to join their "quest to create the most inventive and delicious uses for Hidden Valley® Original Ranch® Salad Dressing & Seasoning Mix". It's a great chance to get some goodies and some exclusive recipes. I know I'll be entering. Check out the details below.
Hidden Valley Heroes
Note: This contest is now over If you enjoy entertaining with friends, cooking delicious meals for your family, or just trying new things in the kitchen (not to mention great freebies) -- Hidden Valley Heroes is for you! Just click to this link: http://allrecipes.com/features/hiddenvalleyranch.aspx and tell us why you love Hidden Valley® Original Ranch® , the types of places you would serve delicious recipes with Hidden Valley® Original Ranch® , and why you should be one of the chosen few! Its easy and should only take you a few minutes. There's no cost to enter or join and you can enter through January 15, 2007.
What is a Hidden Valley Hero?
Hidden Valley Heroes love the way ranch dressing tastes, they love the way it makes their kids miraculously eat their veggies, and most of all, they love thinking of different ways to use it in favorite recipes. They will serve as ambassadors for the brand over the next year and will enjoy this elite status, along with select information and gifts. Hidden Valley Heroes will receive the following COMPLIMENTARY benefits:
Access to easy and delicious recipes your family will love
What will members need to do? Cook...and talk!
Try some Hidden Valley Original Ranch Salad Dressing & Seasoning Mix recipes -- and maybe even create some of your own.
Take them to your book club, Bunco group, neighborhood potluck…anyplace you choose.
Tell your friends all about the delicious dishes you’ve created with Hidden Valley Ranch. And then tell us about the rave reviews you receive!
Ranch dressing recognized at Inventors Hall of Fame! Read the article here.
10/30/06 Ranch Online! - I've got a bunch of updates to the ranch map to post (thanks to those of you who submitted new countries recently) and some new pics, but I just got back from vacation and I'm beat, so I probably won't post them tonight. I did want to share something I got in my email recently though. It looks like Amazon is getting into the grocery game! It doesn't look like you can get frozen food or produce there, but you can certainly get bottled ranch and ranch dry mixes! Check out my search results for ranch here. Not sure if they ship out of the country or not, but maybe this will help those of you in rural communities with limited ranch options.
I never realized how popular the Ranch Tooth is until now. I've been getting a few emails about the tooth and it's been a topic of discussion on many forums and blogs. As with most things, some people love it, and some people hate it. I may have to make a whole page dedicated to the topic because there is a lot of good material out there. These folks reference it in the photo of their cat (at the bottom of their page), Answers.com has a good write up on it here and this guy really seems to hate it. There is even a myspace entry for the Ranch Tooth. I think he's pretty funny, but I can see how it might get annoying after a while. But hey, that's a commercial for ya.
07/09/06 Another Ranch Tooth Commercial! - Dennis found this second Ranch Tooth commercial for me on YouTube. Check it out:
06/05/06 The Ranch Tooth! - I saw this on TV a while back, but I couldn't ever find a clip online... until now. Someone uploaded it to YouTube, so here it is for your enjoyment:
04/18/06 It's been a while - I've been working on fulfilling my quest to go snowboarding every weekend this year, so I haven't had as much time at home to work on the site. It's been a great season though, and the snow just keeps on coming. I went to Mt. Bachelor this last weekend and it was a high of 30° F, tons of fresh powder and snowing hard all day long! Quite amazing for April. Anyway, I'm sure you'd rather know how the ranch was there, buuuut I had Nacho's, so I didn't get to try it. :( I'm going again this weekend, so I'll have to try it then and let you know.
In other news, we've got some updates to the Ranch Map. Thanks to Brandi and Sam, we've added new reports for countries in both Africa and Asia. Thanks for sending those in! Remember, I don't travel much, so the Ranch Map is pretty much reader created and supported. If you know the status of ranch in a country not filled in yet, let me know!
02/08/06 New Stuff! - I've added a new Restaurant Ranch Reviews page to the Reviews section. Check out my reviews of ranch from various restaurants like Arby's, Izzy's Pizza and more. It's off to a good start, and more will come soon. I'm also working on reviews of Cool Ranch Doritos and Deccio's Ranch Dressing that I will post in the near future.
We've got a new user submitted recipe over in the Ranch Recipes section and I made a correction to the Ranch Map. It turns out Northern Ireland is not a part of Ireland (not sure how I got an A in World Geography without knowing that). I hope I didn't offend anybody.
12/25/05 MerryChristmas!- It's that time of year again. I hope I get some ranch, and I hope you do too! :) Thanks to everyone that bought Planet Ranch T-Shirts and stuff for the Holidays, I hope the recipients enjoy them. I'm on vacation right now, so I've been working on some reviews (finally) that I will be posting before I go back to work Thursday, so check back for that. So until then, have a Merry Christmas, Happy Hanukah, Happy Kwanza and a Happy Festivus!
11/25/05 Happy Thanksgiving! - I hope everyone had a great Thanksgiving and enjoyed some ranch with their meal. I made some Hidden Valley Ranch Dip (the kind where you just add sour cream) and had it with some tastey Sour Cream and Onion ruffled chips (not Ruffles brand though).
Want to support Planet Ranch and get the Firefox Web Browser at the same time? Then click on the "Get Firefox with Google Toolbar " link on the right side of this page to install Firefox and I get $1 for each install (if you don't see the button, you may need to temporarily turn off your ad blocker).
11/06/05 Updated Image Gallery! - I finally updated the Image Gallery. It took most of the day getting the Coppermine Photo Gallery customized to match the layout of the main pages here. I've got a couple bugs to work out, and I need to update the photo titles and descriptions, but for the most part it is online. Check it out Here!
11/02/05 New Ranch In My Fridge - I recently got sent a sample of some great ranch dressing made right here in the Pacific Northwest. Deccio's Ranch Dressing and Dip Mix is a very tasty ranch mix made by Deccio's Seasoning. If you love ranch, you should give this one a try. I whipped some up and tried it with cheese fries, mozzarella sticks, potato skins and even some pizza and it went well with all of them.
The standard ranch packet makes 1 quart, and can be made as a dressing or a dip with a slight change of the added ingredients (buttermilk, mayo and sour cream). I haven't tried the dip recipe yet, but the dressing recipe was great. They suggest 2 cups mayo (I like Best Foods brand), 1 cup buttermilk and 1 cup sour cream. This mix tastes very good, but I think I might try it without the sour cream next time. I'll let you know which one I prefer.
In other news, we've got a new addition to the Ranch Map. See the Americas map for the newest sighting of ranch dressing from Central America.
09/22/05 Back from Vacation - I just got back from a week long vacation at Disneyland. It was a blast! The downside is that ranch is pretty rare at Disneyland, but at least they have lots of candy. :)
On another note, we should be getting some photographic evidence that there is ranch in Argentina. Two of my friends just got back from there and they said they got a picture of some ranch. We had already confirmed Argentina's status as a Has Ranch! country, but this is a nice addition to the collection of information on the Ranch Map. As soon as I get it, I'll post it here.
08/19/05 What a great article! Mara sent me a link to this great article on ranch dressing. While it doesn't explore the question, "Why do Americans love it so much?" very well, it does explain the history on a bigger scale than the typical Hidden Valley posting of the history of ranch. I especially like the line, "..ranch is fattier than humdrum Italian, which is basically a gussied-up vinaigrette." Take that Italian! Ha ha. Anyway, if you didn't click the link to the article up above, click this one to read the article now. Thanks, Mara!
In other news, we've got a new update to the Ranch Map. Andrew sent in an update for the Map of Asia. While it's not good news, it is good to see the map updated. Thanks Andrew!
There have been so many great updates from our readers recently. Keep them coming! Send me your links, map updates or even comments. I usually try to post links and updates from readers within a week of getting them.
07/20/05 New Map Updates!Thanks to "N Rugg", we now have our first update to the African Ranch Map. Check out the Ranch Map Here!
In other news, I'm working on a new vision for the Ranch of the Week section. It's time that we all come to grips with the fact that I just can't post content on a regular schedule. I have bursts of ideas and content, and then I go for short periods with nothing. I've tried daily and even weekly updates of sections and I'm just not very good at it. :P So, I'm leaning towards making it more of a "Ranch of the Month" section. I've got a lot of content sitting here waiting to be posted, so I'm working on giving you a whole bunch of pics at once and then I should be able to keep up with the easy schedule of once a month. Of course I'll try to give you updates to other sections more often, but it will be random rather than scheduled. Anyway, check back soon for that.
06/28/05 Bad ranch!! I was so bummed this weekend. I made a special trip over to Izzy's Pizza to get some potato rounds with their excellent ranch (some of the best in town), and when I got home and dipped my first "round" in the ranch I was sadly disappointed to find the ranch didn't taste right. I'm hoping this was just a case of having run out of the regular stuff and having to use a substitute and not a case of changed recipe. I'll have to try again in a couple weeks and see if it improves.
On another note, I slacked off all month on The Ranch of the Week, so I'll make up for that this weekend with some cool new photos.
05/25/05 Homemade ranch.This weeks ranch pic is homemade. It's a bit late, so I owe you one. See the ranch I made here.
05/12/05 Ranch Of The Week Update.This week we have some take-out ranch at work. Check it out!
05/04/05 Updated Ranch Map. We've got a new update to the Ranch Map. Jennifer emailed me with some info on Norway. Check out Europe on the Ranch Map and see if they have ranch or not.
05/02/05 Another Month of Ranch! Yes, we've made it to the second month of Ranch Of The Week. Check out this week's ranch here. Did you miss last month's ranch? Well it's been archived to here!
04/24/05 New Ranch Of The Week!This week features some ranch still in it's container. Check it out here.
04/18/05 More ranch in action!Check out Ranch Of The Week for this weeks new ranch pic.This one comes from California.
04/11/05 I've got ranch again. Yep, my dry spell is over, I made some ranch last night and I am happy again. I celebrated with some jalapeno poppers. I also made some Guacamole (the Mexican ranch) yesterday and I've been happy enjoying that as well.
04/09/05 New Ranch Of The Week.Check out the Ranch Of The Week page for a new image of ranch in action.
04/03/05 New section! To celebrate the move to a new host, I've added a new section that will include weekly updates. Check out Ranch Of The Week for real life photos of ranch dressing in a variety of exotic locations. Here is this weeks:
On another note, yesterday was my sister's birthday, HappyBirthday Ali!
03/30/05 We've moved!Some of you may have noticed that Planet Ranch has been up and down (mostly down) for the last 6 days. Most of that was due to technical issues at my web host. It took them 3days to fix the problem, and then a few hours later, it went down again and still isn't up at the time of this writing. Anyway, that prompted me to get a new host since it wasn't the first time I've had problems. We are now on the new server, but I've still got some things to fix, so bear with me while I restore everything.
It's perfect!! I finally made some ranch at home that tastes just like the ranch at some of my favorite restaurants! Dennis, the new guy at work, keeps telling me about making ranch with buttermilk instead of regular milk; I just never think to pick some up when at the store, so I haven't tried it. Well, the other day he was out at the store during lunch and he picked up some buttermilk and a packet of Uncle Dan's Classic Ranch Dressing for me. What a great gift! I made it tonight with the 2 cups of buttermilk, the ranch packet and 2 cups of mayonnaise and it was great!! I just happen to have some good restaurant ranch in the fridge from yesterday, so I even got to do a taste test and the new stuff was even better than the restaurant ranch. I am so sold on buttermilk, and I have no idea how I went this long with out trying it. I'm not sure how much the brand of ranch varies the taste, so I'll have to try some Hidden Valley next time. If any of you out there have done a taste test, please let me know your opinion! Mm mm, now I just need to find some good stuff to eat with it.
Oh no! I have no ranch! I've been making so much fresh ranch lately, that my bottled ranch was starting to get pretty stale and I threw it out. Now I'm out of milk, and I can't make any more ranch until I go get some. I'll have to try to remember to get some after work tomorrow or I'll have another ranchless night (I really could have gone for some mozzarella sticks tonight too!).
Woohoo! We've got a new donation to the Ranch Fund, bringing the total to $27! Check out the Ranch Fund page for more details and to donate today! While I'm at it, I might as well plug my store as well. Check out the Planet Ranch Store to buy cool stuff like T-Shirts and Coffee Mugs!
I've been going over my web site logs, and I've noticed that word of Planet Ranch is getting around. Visitors have come from places like Norway, Mexico, Japan, Finland, Thailand, Estonia and even Canada! :) But sadly, the Ranch Map lacks information for most of the world. So, if you are visiting from another country, or know people in other countries, or are visiting or have ever visited another country, drop me a line and tell me about ranch in your part of the world. Can you get it? Easily? Have to order it online? Or have it smuggled in from across the boarder? I want to know! And I want to update the Map so others can know too!
Good news this weekend. The Ranch Fund is up $10, which leads to a great new discovery. Instead of buying some packets at the store the other day, I checked the spice isle and found the Hidden Valley® Seasoning and Dressing Mix Canister. This is great! it's equivalent of 8 packets, but you can measure out smaller or larger portions as needed. This is the way to buy it! It's cheaper and more flexible than the packets. Plus, it can easily be used as a seasoning.
The Ranch Map has some new updates, thanks to email from Ian and Sarah. I also want to thank all of you that have submitted so far, I couldn't make the Ranch Map without you.
Happy New Year! Here's to another year of enjoying ranch dressing and the many foods that is goes with. Make it an enjoyable holiday weekend, go out and get some ranch!
I've gotten a few new reports in my email about the Ranch Map. With the holidays, vacation and getting back to work, I haven't had a chance to go through them. So check back soon for some new updates.