It's just about that time when plump and luscious strawberries come into season in southern California. I love them every which way: in a smoothie, mashed and stirred into chia pudding, pureed and frozen into ice pops, or just on their own as a snack. It's the one fruit I can go crazy with on my low sugar regimen so I make the most of it. Here's a recipe from Raw & Simple that is a classic and so quick and easy to make. I like to add equal parts mesclun to jazz it up but feel free to use just spinach. This salad is versatile enough to serve at an elegant dinner, a summer picnic, brunch or as a breakfast salad.
A note on making the dressing. Please seek out a good quality olive oil and balsamic vinegar. My favorite balsamic vinegar is from Bariani, but stores like We Olive, who specialize in oils and vinegars, will have some great ones on tap. I recently ran out of my Bariani balsamic vinegar and my special stash of home pressed olive oil from Mallorca so I used some cheap Trader Joe's Balsamic of Modena and their organic Spanish olive oil. It was awful. I could hardly eat my salad because it was so offensive. Never again! I ran down to We Olive yesterday and got stocked up and poured my cheap stuff down the drain. Nuff said.
Strawberry Spinach Salad with Sweet Balsamic Vinaigrette Dressing
Makes 4 servings
Prep Time: 15 minutes
4 cups baby spinach
4 cups mesclun or spring mix
2 cups sliced strawberries
1/4 cup red onion, thinly sliced with a mandoline or knife
1/4 cup chopped onion
Combine all ingredients in a large bowl.
1/4 cup olive oil
2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
1 teaspoon dijon mustard
1 teaspoon agave nectar
salt and pepper to taste
Whisk all dressing ingredients in a small bowl. Drizzle over individual salad servings as desired.