Best DIY Salad Dressing

Using a basic ratio, you can make so many dressings in under 60 seconds. Learn more at TwiceasTasty.com.
After the heat of summer sent lettuces bolting, recent cool fall temperatures and rain mean salads are back. If you don’t grow your own salad fixings, you may not have noticed the shift from sweet, tender greens to bitter, coarse leaves. But home gardeners will be well aware of the change and have transitioned from lettuce-based salads to ones featuring heat-tolerant or late-season vegetables.

In a piece for Clean Pates earlier this summer, I shared my technique and ratio for making a collection of salad dressings. Even if you don’t grow salad greens, I’m a firm believer that you should make your own dressings. Among disappearing food traditions, one of the most lamentable is scratch-made salad dressing. As Mark Kurlansky writes in The Food of a Younger Land, “What could better spell the beginning of the end than bottled salad dressing, the manufacture of a product that was so easy to make at home?”

Easy is right: Using a basic ratio, you can make so many dressings. A pinch of this and dab of that completely change a dressing’s flavor. My technique clocks in under 60 seconds, and I can now eyeball the proportions without even dirtying measuring spoons.
Learn to make the Best DIY Salad Dressing

Crunchy Cabbage Salad

 I grow several cabbage varieties, some to ferment as sauerkraut, kimchi, and slaw and others to shred raw for my favorite salad. Learn more at TwiceasTasty.com.
Growing cabbage always presents challenges. In my short growing season, each plant produces one head but doesn’t really have enough time to form a second flush. It has a big garden footprint, and I have to protect it under a cover all season if I want to keep cabbageworms and loopers from calling it home. Some varieties need to be harvested midsummer, when everything else is begging for attention in the garden, so I need to check carefully for number of growing days to ensure a long, extended harvest.

Is it worth it? Clearly I’ve answered yes, because as I share in my Twice as Tasty column for the Flathead Beacon, I now grow several cabbage varieties. Some I enjoy fresh, especially as young, raw leafy greens. Others I ferment to have on hand all winter. But my favorites remain the raw crunchy heads that I shred for salads.
Learn to make Crunchy Cabbage Salad

Shrimp and Summer Squash Enchiladas with Homemade Enchilada Sauce

A homemade sauce and soft yet intact tortillas makes these enchiladas household favorites. Learn more at TwiceasTasty.com.
The enchiladas I share this week in my Twice as Tasty column for the Flathead Beacon have become household favorites. And that all started with the sauce. Before I began making my own enchilada sauce, I occasionally attempted this rich, cheesy dish when we wanted comfort food, but I never quite nailed the technique of getting the tortillas in that just-right place, ending up with ones that were mushy or crunchy. Then I found a sauce recipe I love and started putting up jars of it, which led me to track down the technique that keeps the tortillas soft and intact, making them the perfect vehicle for the homemade sauce.

The recipe I share here lets you make this delicious sauce in a smaller batch without the effort of canning it. If you fall for this sauce like I did, you can make a larger amount to process in a boiling water bath using the instructions in Tips & Tricks. The enchiladas themselves can have all sorts of fillings: as we transition from summer to fall, my favorite pairs homegrown summer squash with sautéed shrimp.
Learn to make Shrimp and Summer Squash Enchiladas with Homemade Enchilada Sauce

Onion Lover’s Dip

Caramelizing onions on the grill makes a great primer for grilling vegetables and a flavor-packed dip. Learn more at TwiceasTasty.com.
I’m not sure there’s a vegetable that changes as much in texture and flavor when you apply heat as an onion. Caramelized onions taste completely different from raw ones, whether you cook them low and slow on the stovetop or let them pick up char and a slightly smoky flavor on the grill.

As with the three forms of ginger I use in Triple Gingersnaps, combining caramelized onions with other fresh and cooked alliums builds layers of flavor. I share one of my favorite combinations—grilled onions and garlic with fresh onion greens, whether the tops of bulb onions, chives, scallions, or walking onions—this week in my Twice as Tasty column for the Flathead Beacon. While you can oven-roast or sauté the onions and garlic for a similar effect, I fire up the grill while it’s still so hot into the evening. The recipe in my column outlines my grilling process, making this dip a great primer for grilling vegetables.
Learn to grill onions and make Onion Lover’s Dip