My go-to homemade salad dressing
A classic blue cheese salad dressing has always been my favorite. Even as a little girl, my love for blue cheese was obvious. If you set a cheese board in front of me, I made a beeline for the blue cheese and would cut off a huge chunk for my plate. While other children were eating copious amounts of ranch dressing on everything, I would always refuse it and only use blue cheese dressing.
Even now, as an adult, I use an embarrassing amount of blue cheese on a weekly basis. To my defense, it’s not my fault that it’s so awesome sprinkled over roasted winter vegetables…and sautéed summer vegetables…and steak…and potatoes that are mashed, roasted, smashed, etc., and even fruit (hellllooo pears). It’s all so good.
Until the other day, when a friend of mine mentioned that she had no idea how to make a blue cheese, or any salad dressing, from scratch. At that point, I knew I had to write this post for her. Even if I get one person to make their own salad dressing, my work here is done.
How to select a good blue cheese:
Most of the blue cheeses in the large grocery stores are pre-cut and wrapped in plastic wrap so it’s hard to tell if it’s fresh or not. Here are some tips on how I select a good blue cheese:
1. If it’s pre-cut at the cheese counter, look for it in a wedge or chunk form (no pre-crumbled stuff please, that’s not very tasty)
2. Look for one whose creamy parts are whiter in color. If it is too yellow or shows any pinkish color, don’t get it.
3. Don’t buy if there is moisture or water trapped inside the packaging. If the cheese is mushy or watery, it’s probably not in the greatest shape.
4. Make sure there is no white mold growing on the rind or on any cut surface area of the cheese. Fuzzy is cute on kittens and puppies, but not so much on cheese.
5. Avoid a cheese that smells of ammonia. Cheese should never smell of ammonia. Actually, I don’t think anything should smell of ammonia, except for ammonia.
How to store cheese:
Plastic wrap is terrible for cheese because it doesn’t allow it to breathe. Once home, remove the cheese from the store’s plastic wrapping and rewrap in parchment or wax paper with a layer of plastic wrap loosely wrapped over it. Also, store it away from other cheeses because blues tend to be really friendly and like to share their mold with others.
I use a raw, creamy, mild blue cheese for this recipe (Roth Cheese Buttermilk Blue Cheese), but any type of blue cheese will work. Just use what you like.Beef and blue cheese go together so well! I adore a dinner of these Short Ribs with a side garden salad with blue cheese dressing on it. Perfection!
Enjoy this classic blue cheese dressing recipe next time you need a delicious salad or as a dip for raw veggies!
- 1 cup sour cream (or for a lighter dressing: substitute 1/2 cup plain yogurt and 1/2 cup sour cream)
- 1/2 cup mayonnaise
- 3/4 cup good quality blue cheese, crumbled
- 1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice or vinegar
- 2 tablespoons milk or half & half, add more for a thinner dressing
- 1/4 teaspoon white pepper
- salt to taste
Combine all ingredients in a small bowl. Mix well. Store covered in the refrigerator for at least 2 hours before serving, to let flavors meld.