Spinach Greens and Strawberries with a Raspberry-Mustard Dressing
Start with Four Cups of Spinach
A Wonderful Salad Recipe
Spinach is a very simple green to grow in the spring or fall. It takes little space in the garden and offers plenty of dark leafy greens.
Spinach is easily seeded in spring, just like lettuce, and makes a very healthy salad green; pair it with strawberries and walnuts in a light raspberry vinaigrette dressing and you have a fabulous set of flavors and a bowlful of antioxidants and bioflavanoids.
Something good for you that tastes good, too.
Nutritional Value Is High
WHY SHOULD YOU EAT LEAFY GREENS?
Because they are full of nutrients, add fiber to your diet, and contribute to your well being.
Carotenoids vitamin A, lutein and zeaxanthin can be found in such additions as spinach and lettuces.
Substances in spinach called inorganic nitrates help muscles work more efficiently.
"Dietary intake of watercress may be sufficient to modulate this potential anti-cancer pathway." - Health benefits of Salad Greens
Greens are good source of folate.
"A recent study from Ohio State University measured how well phytochemicals were absorbed by the body after people ate a salad of lettuce, carrot, and spinach, with or without 2 1/2 tablespoons of avocado. The avocado-eaters absorbed eight times more alpha-carotene and more than 13 times more beta-carotene (both of which are thought to help protect against cancer and heart disease) than the group eating salads without avocado" - WebMD
"To remember a successful salad is generally to remember a successful dinner; at all events, the perfect dinner necessarily includes the perfect salad."
George Ellwanger (1848-1906)
Add Luscious Strawberry Slices
- 4 cups spinach, washed and picked over
- 1 cup fresh strawberries, sliced
- 12 walnut halves, coarsely chopped
- 1/4 red onion, thinly sliced
- 1/4 cup feta or gorgonzola cheese, crumbled
- 1/3 cup raspberry balsamic vinegar
- 2-3 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 pinch onion powder
- salt and pepper to taste
- 1 teaspoon Dijon mustard or honey mustard
- 1 teaspoon raspberry or strawberry preserves
- Whisk together the vinegar, oil, onion powder, mustard, and preserves. Salt and pepper to taste.
- Toss the spinach with vinaigrette dressing, layer on the strawberries and onion, sprinkle with walnuts and crumbled cheese.
- * For a real treat, toast the walnuts for a minute or so in the oven before assembling the salad.
- * Another addition could be avocado, sliced thinly, which complements the textures and flavors of this salad.
Rate Spinach Strawberry Salad
Tips to Get the Best Flavors Possible
|Serving size: 2 cups|
|Calories from Fat||261|
|% Daily Value *|
|Fat 29 g||45%|
|Protein 10 g||20%|
|Sodium 455 mg||19%|
|* The Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet, so your values may change depending on your calorie needs. The values here may not be 100% accurate because the recipes have not been professionally evaluated nor have they been evaluated by the U.S. FDA.|
Calories and Fat
Much of the calories and fat come from the cheese crumbles, if that is a concern don't use the cheese, maybe garnish with crunchy additions instead. However, they also add much of the protein, so take that into consideration when adjusting the recipe.
Try Beet Cubes
Vary the Recipe
Most people like strawberries, but what if you are allergic to them, or you want something different?
To use the same dressing, but adding raspberry rather than strawberry preserves, or maybe plum, the fruit flavor remains.
Also consider using cubes or slices of small, sweet beetroot in place of the fresh strawberry. that would provide additional nutrients.
Don't like walnuts? Try using pecans, instead.
Lkewise, not everyone loves sliced onion in their salads. While I love the flavor it brings, it can be left out. Maybe add just a pinch of garlic to the dressing? It's your call.
Use gorgonzola crumbles in place of the feta cheese.
If dairy is an issue simply make without the cheese crumbles.
This is a versatile salad, and while spinach is the classic, watercress or arugula can be added to the bowl -or just garnishing the top. Remember that variety brings in additional nutrients, so experiment with the ingredients you like best. The dressing complements many of your favorites with its fruity balsamic falvors.
Eat More Salad
"There was an Old Person of Fife,
Who was greatly disgusted with life;
They sang him a ballad,
and fed him on salad,
Which cured that Old Person of Fife."