Filling Salads

Salads are so versatile: chop up some ingredients, toss them with dressing, and your fresh, one-dish meal is ready to eat. Get salad recipes at TwiceasTasty.com.
Salads dominate my harvest menu. They’re so versatile: chop up some ingredients, toss them with a bit of dressing, and your fresh, one-dish meal is ready to eat. I start making homegrown salads as soon as spring greens show true leaves and don’t stop until the ground freezes.

Most salads fit the “no recipe required” category. Once you find your preferred ratios, even the dressing can be made on the spot with whatever’s at hand. If you follow @twiceastastyblog on Instagram you’ll find plenty of my daily salads. But I still get enough requests for ingredients and proportions that you’ll find a couple dozen salad and dressing recipes on the blog and can even gather your friends for a workshop. Some of these recipes are traditional, like panzanella, sunomono, and the two American classics in this week’s post. But as you’ll learn, all of these salads can be adapted based on what’s in season and what you have on hand.
Learn to make Three-Bean Salad and Taco Salad

Chive Blossoms

Chive Blossom Vinegar taught me to love infusions beautifully dress salads. Get vinegar and salad recipes at TwiceasTasty.com.
We recently had a friend over for dinner and somehow ended up talking about vinegar. Well, not just talking—I was soon pulling an array of vinegars from a shelf in my tiny kitchen and explaining why I have so many, how this is just the daily stash, where I store gallon jugs for pickling and canning, and how we had unexpectedly found a mother in one jug that I was using to start my own vinegar. I may have been a little excited.

You could say that the tang of vinegar is my jam. My pantry collection typically numbers 7 bottles, which I put into everything from drinks to mac and cheese to pie crust. But because I like to mix and match flavors and keep many herbs and spices on hand, I only saw the point of infusing vinegars after I discovered a chive blossom infusion in Harry Rosenblum’s Vinegar Revival. It’s so easy to make that my recipe varies little from his instructions, but my first attempt, and probably favorite flavor, used garlic chives. The resulting flavored vinegar beautifully dresses a salad featuring fresh spring herbs.
Learn to make Chive Blossom Vinegar and Herbed Bean Salad with Fresh Mozzarella

Sourdough Naan

I bake sourdough because it’s delicious. But many people find its tangy flavor because they have problems digesting other breads. Get sourdough recipes at TwiceasTasty.com.
I bake sourdough because it’s delicious. But many people discover its tangy flavor because they have problems digesting other breads. Studies have found that sourdough—particularly homemade, long-ferment sourdough—is not only easier to digest but may have bonus health benefits. It makes sense if you think about it: You feed your sourdough starter flour. It eats it, turning it into more wild yeast and healthy bacteria. When you use it to make a bread, the longer the dough sits, the more it predigests the flour for you. As it does this, the sourdough bacteria release micronutrients, neutralize phytic acid, and stabilize blood sugar levels. And this all makes the bread twice as tasty.

The upshot is that if you have a gluten sensitivity but have not been diagnosed with full-blown celiac disease, you may be able to eat homemade sourdough breads. I’m not a doctor or nutritionist, so you should discuss this with yours, but there’s disagreement on whether gluten-free products, particularly commercially processed ones, are better than their homemade, wheat-based counterparts if you don’t have immune reactions to gluten.
Learn to make Low-Gluten Sourdough Naan and Spiced Red Lentil Dip

Pot Beans

Put the most flavor in your beans. Get Seasoned Pot Beans and Red Beans and Rice recipes at TwiceasTasty.com.I didn’t get hooked on dried legumes until I discovered pot beans. The preparation style evolved from frijoles de olla, traditionally cooked in earthenware pots in Mexico. Instead of cooking dried beans in 2 stages—once in pure water until soften and again with ingredients that give them flavor—everything is thrown into the pot with the soaked beans. As soon as they’re done, dinner is served.

Pot beans absorb broth and seasonings yet remain adaptable to almost any bean dish. Suddenly, cooking up a pound of dried beans seems worthwhile. Imagine: Before going to bed Sunday night, you spend 3 minutes setting the beans to soak. After work Monday, you give them a rinse and toss them back into the pot with some onion, carrot, garlic, herbs, and stock. About an hour later, you have your first meal: Seasoned Pot Beans. You also have the basis for many quick meals the rest of the week. Huevos rancheros. Beans on toast. Asian bean dip. Hummus. Quesadillas. Corn, Bean, and Pepper Salsa. Burritos. Myriad soups. Sourdough Empanadas. Louis Armstrong’s favorite Louisiana-style red beans, perfect for Fat Tuesday. The list goes on—and I’ll be adding to it all month.
Learn to make Seasoned Pot Beans and Red Beans and Rice