Strawberry Spinach Salad

Strawberry Spinach SaladI mentioned on Monday that this salad comes from my sister-in-law Stephanie.  She used to make it in my post-marriage, pre-reproductive years, which was also the time when I first discovered this total cooking obsession that has kind of taken over my life in the best way possible.  This salad was my first venture into the world of “foodie-ness”–it was not the typical bowl of chopped iceberg and shredded carrots with a bottle of ranch that you so often see at family dinners.  It was so simple and yet so incredible–juicy, fresh strawberries in season, crisp cucumbers, tender spinach, and the intensity of toasted almonds combined with the freshness of the Lemon Poppy Seed Vinaigrette totally opened up all these doors for me.

Whenever I’m at Sam’s Club (or Costco, when we lived by one) in March and April and those giant clamshell containers of giant strawberries that are, like, $1 a pound are staring at me, I seriously feel guilty not buying some–it’s almost like puppies in the Walmart parking lot on a Saturday.  Since two pounds of strawberries are a considerably smaller commitment than a puppy (and better for my mental health), I usually just buy them.  Then I make jam.  And strawberry sauce.  And salads.  Like this one.

You’ll need a bag of spinach,

raw Spinach

sliced fresh strawberries, red onion, and cucumbers (peeled or un-peeled, whatever your preference)…

Fresh strawberries, cucumbers, and onions

Toasted almonds (just heat them in a small skillet over medium heat, stirring frequently, until they’re golden and fragrant)…

Toasted Almonds

and one recipe of the Lemon Poppy Seed Vinaigrette.  If you want to add a little more protein to serve as a meal, you can also add strips of grilled chicken.

Grilled Chicken

This next part is super hard.  You can arrange all the ingredients on individual plates…

or you can just shake everything together and let people serve themselves.   Either way is delicious and easy…

Our Best Bites Strawberry Spinach Salad

and a great way to use all the fresh ingredients that are starting to become available.

Strawberry Spinach Salad

(Well, fresh except for that chicken, which, unless you’re in Portland and are friends with Fred Armisen, probably came from the freezer). Thank you, Brent, for sharing the wonder of Portlandia with us).

60 comments

  1. What a coincidence! I was just finishing up my last bit of spinach-strawberry-red onion-cucumber-honey poppyseed salad when I clicked on your blog for this post! I put feta cheese on mine – nice contrast with the sweet strawberries and honey poppyseed dressing. Also, I didn’t have chicken, so I tossed on some chopped steak. That’s why I love this salad; it’s so versatile!

  2. Love that video too. Hilarious! And thanks for a written-down version of this salad. It never comes out for me the same way every time, but one of my favorites! And good reminder about the strawberries at Costco. I’ll have to go get some for Peter’s birthday.

  3. Salad looks wonderful. The video is priceless, had to watch their other antics and forwarded to all my Oregon friends.

  4. Sounds yummy – I just bought some of the strawberries you mentioned last weekend and they are almost gone! Just enough left for my yogurt parfait at lunch. I’ll just have to buy some more this weekend 🙂

  5. Oh and I know this is probably a bazaar question, but do you know what the font names are of the fonts you used for your site? I love ’em.

  6. Ok. Seriously? That Hulu video??? Made my day. And I love this salad. My husband is obsessed with spinach salads lately (weird I know) so I’m sure I’ll be making this soon!! Thank again guys!

    p.s Oh and this is the girl from the bountiful book signing who came in with her mom and baby who “never” comments. I commented finally! I’ll try and make it a normal thing now.:)

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