Why Are South Dakotans So Obsessed With Ranch?
Ranch. Here in the midwest and especially in South Dakota, we can't get enough of the creamy, herbal, and tangy salad dressing.
It pairs perfectly with wings, carrots, and even pizza. (By the way, if you haven't tried ranch with pizza you are completely missing out on an amazing savory salty tasting experience.)
And as often as we ask for a side of ranch at a restaurant why isn't it on the table next to the ketchup? Sorry, mustard.
As someone who use to work in the restaurant industry for many years, I would have people ask if they could get extra ranch at almost every table I served.
But, I think the main reason ranch has become so popular is because of its versatile yet mild flavor.
Kids and adults alike can't seem to get enough of the stuff. And with enough Hidden Valley on a carrot stick gets kids to eat their veggies so a win-win right? Or at least that's how my cafeteria in Beresford Elementary School treated it.
The history of how Ranch came to be, in my opinion, is also very intertwined with our values here in South Dakota.
Hidden Valley Ranch was first made by a man named James Henson according to Thrillist back in 1949 in Alaska.
Henson would send as parting gifts to friends and family members that came to visit him jars of the buttermilk based ranch dressing. Friends and family from there frequently began placing orders of the stuff.
Shortly after, Henson began to sell it in Kelly's Korner a local grocery store and the rest is history.