The arrival of spring means that seasonal fruits and vegetables are in season. Produce like asparagus, strawberries, leafy greens and rhubarb among others.
We look through some of our favorite past cooking magazine issues and possibly yours as well to find the perfect spring salads.
Your family will love these vibrant, colorful and delicious salads. If you want to make a meal out of them, just add some chopped cooked chicken, or fish, like salmon, halibut, or tuna.
Both featured salads serve a table of four.
Arugula Salad Topped with Walnuts Strawberries and Parmesan Cheese
1 cup halved fresh strawberries
2 tablespoons aged balsamic vinegar *see recipe notes below
1 tablespoon EV olive oil
1 teaspoon raw local honey (local to your area)
Add ingredients to a blender and blend until well mixed.
Aged balsamic vinegar may not be economical for you, as I thought it wasn’t for me. Unless you plan to regularly use it. A bottle of 12 year old aged balsamic vinegar is around $40 a bottle.
What we did, is brought a 1/2 cup of regular balsamic vinegar infused with strawberry (you can also opt for blueberry or pomegranate) to a boil over high heat in a small ceramic coated skillet. Cook until the vinegar begins to thicken and becomes syrupy, about 2 to 3 minutes. Let cool then follow vinaigrette recipe above.
1 cup walnut halves
We found a cool way to candy the walnuts, and credit goes to private chef Chris Crary with his candied walnut recipe featured at California Walnuts.
1/2 cup California walnuts
1 egg white
1 ounce sugar
2 tablespoons walnut oil
Salt to taste
Beat egg white until it forms soft peaks. Add the sugar and mix in to peaked egg white. Next add the walnuts and coat with the egg mixture. Place in a 300 degree oven for 30 minutes, stirring every 10 minutes. Allow to cool. Once mixture is cool, toss in walnut oil. Set aside.
16 ounce bag of arugula
2 cups fresh strawberries, quartered
1/2 cup candied walnuts
In a large salad bowl, combine arugula, strawberries and candied walnuts. Plate salad and drizzle with vinaigrette and top with shaved Parmesan cheese. Serve immediately.
To make salad a meal, when mixing salad ingredients, add a cup or two of your choice, chopped cooked chicken, salmon, halibut, or tuna.
Mixed Greens with Smoked Salmon Avocado and Grapefruit Salad
1 grapefruit with white flesh, peeled, pith removed, and dice segments
5 ounce package of mixed greens
1 large avocado, peeled, pitted and sliced
5 ounce package smoked salmon, flake with a fork
Juice of 1 lemon
1 teaspoon of sweet garlic mustard (we found this at Whole Foods Market)
1 tablespoon of EV olive oil
Salt and Pepper to taste
Mix lemon juice, mustard, oil, salt and pepper to a large salad bowl. Next add mixed greens, grapefruit, avocado, and smoked salmon. Toss until well coated with vinaigrette. Plate and serve.
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