Last week was one long week. The roofers showed up Monday for the new roof, I started a new job, and allergy season hit like Mohammad Ali. By Friday night I was all in. Good news showed up in my inbox from Denison Farm though, strawberry season has started! They’re a few weeks early, but I’ll take it! The first strawberries of the season were enough to draw my itchy, watery, exhausted rear out the door and down to the farmer’s market. I had planned on getting at least a half flat, but since they only had about a flat left by the time I made it down there. There was a line behind me, so I settled for a couple of pints. There will be more strawberries to come.
The first strawberries call for something simple, I’ve waited all year to taste fresh strawberries, I want to taste the strawberry. So I settled for a classic, which is all I could handle through allergy fog anyway. I used raw almonds, if you use salted almonds I would leave the salt out.
Strawberry & Spinach Salad
2 handfuls spinach
7-8 strawberries, halved
7-8 almonds, rough chopped
Thin drizzle olive oil
Thin drizzle balsamic vinegar
Sprinkle coarse salt
Sprinkle course pepper
Layer each ingredient onto a plate, enjoy!
The dressing goes together relatively fast. Once the bacon is cooked it just takes minutes to finish up.
This salad really doesn’t keep well, most dressed salads don’t. I did have leftovers though and trying to be frugal I drained the salad really well, moved it to a sealable container, and decided to see what it was like the next day. It was okay. The flavor was still really good but the texture and looks were, well, very wilted. It’s also pretty salty the next day. Rather than eat it cold, as I did, you could try heating it and have cooked spinach instead of salad. All the ingredients would stand up to a sauté, as long as it was quick. Continue reading →
Most of the time I have no idea why pasta salads are called salads. Really they should just be called cold pasta. I say this because most pasta salads are devoid of what I usually associate salads with, vegetables or even fruit. There’s no reason for this, just pack more veggies in! So that’s what I did.
You could substitute other veggies for the spinach, I’ve made this recipe with broccoli or even mixed frozen veggies. But spinach is what I had that needed to be used up so spinach it was! If you substitute, make sure you cook the veg at least a little. With broccoli I just throw it in with the tortellini, frozen veg you just need to defrost. I used a bowl with a lid with the spinach so that when I threw in the tortellini I could close it up and steam the spinach a bit. Continue reading →
This might seem like an odd recipe to call a salad and not a condiment, but I ate a surprising amount of it. I thought it might be a little much just to eat mushrooms but the onions and garlic really make a difference. Even after a few days in the marinade, the mushrooms where still firm and tasty. Of course, this is a side salad, I wouldn’t want to serve it as a main dish. I served mine with salmon but I think it would team up with beef or pork just as well.
I used crimini mushrooms but I think that just about any type of mushroom would work well. I’d like to try it with my favorite, Lion’s Mane, when they’re in season. Don’t worry about the flavor being to pickle like, the balsamic vinegar is very mild and it’s closer to a dressing than a brine. Continue reading →