Strawberry/Walnut Spinach Salad with Sweet Vinaigrette
A few weeks ago… I made this amazingly killer Strawberry/Walnut Salad for company.
It was so good I even surprised mySELF a little bit! Once I started eating it I almost couldn’t stop to move on to everything else on my plate. So I thought it was a definite must to share on Pretty/Hungry.
By the way: No recipe necessary! I literally went to Kroger and looked at the label of a yummy-looking vinaigrette to see if my instincts were on-the-mark. I was blown away by how basic the ingredient list was on that bottle. So I just came home and made my own version!
For the Salad…
Find some nice greens.
(Spinach or baby romaine or some sort of mixture is nice… but make sure the leaves are nice and dark. No iceberg here. Save it for your BLT.)
Slice up some strawberries and chop up a nice English cucumber (peeled please!)
Also grab about a 3/4 C. of walnut pieces… throw them into a dry skillet and keep a close eye on them as you shake them around over medium heat. They are BEST when toasted. It makes them a little crunchier, a little less stale, and a LOT more flavorful. Just watch them! I burned mine this time fiddling with my camera and its not fun later when you’re trying to pick the black parts off of them so they’ll be edible.
Now then… gather the following ingredients to make the
-white wine vinegar -honey -extra virgin olive oil
-seedless raspberry or strawberry jam -poppy seeds -two small shallots
-salt and pepper -(un-pictured) sugar and lime juice
Shallots have such a nice, delicate, oniony flavor. Slice yours thinly into little ringlets.
Now, if you have one of these awesome large measuring cups that show measurements from the top… pull it out! Start by pouring in 1/3 C. of white wine vinegar. Then add in 1/4 tsp. of both pepper and salt. Eyeball a small palmfull of poppy seeds and add those as well!
Then spoon in a tablespoon (or so) of jam. For color and flavor!
Next comes the honey. About a tablespoon. This is some fancy-shmancey brand of “Texas Clover” honey (whatever THAT means.) And as you can see, it was a little sugary so I wasn’t impressed. Use whatever honey is in your good ole honey bear.
Then slowly stream in about 2/3 C. olive oil as you whisk the dressing. This helps you avoid the separation problem. (Another good solution is to make this dressing in a mason jar so you can screw on the lid and shake it up! I broke my mason jar right before making this. Yes. I did.)
Now… dip your finger in and give it a taste.
I thought mine needed a little more sweetness and little more tartness.
So I added a spoonfull of sugar…
And a few squirts of the good stuff. (If you have fresh limes or lemons… use those. YUM)
Lastly… in go the shallots! (They tend to make whisking difficult if you add them sooner.)
Note: The longer you let the dressing sit, the tamer the flavor of the shallots becomes. I refrigerated mine overnight and the shallots were almost like candy! I’m NOT a raw-onion girl.