Good day, buddies! How we doing? I sit here this morning with a cozy cup of coffee and a beautiful view of the falling snow. And while there’s not much more aesthetically stunning than a fresh snowfall in the woods in my book, this time of year can get pretty mundane and heavy with the foods we eat. So it got me thinking that you might all need a little lightness thrown into your winter meal rotations, just as we do. And this salad should absolutely do the trick 👌🏼
In case you haven’t caught on already, I am a giant fan of meals that contain a lot of simple components. Because I love to pile on texture and flavor. But also because it is so wonderful to serve my family food that they can make their own. We eat a ton of “bowls” and “salads” for this reason..because these dishes can so easily be deconstructed or reconstructed to each individuals needs while still allowing me to serve 1 meal that I know everyone will enjoy. If one prefers their ingredients separate vs mixed, they can do that. Often times the kids build theirs just as I do, but their little hands just want to do the work. So many pros to this, in my opinion. It simplifies my work, it eliminates whining because everyone can eat the components they like in the way that they enjoy it, it teaches the kiddos meal time creativity and encourages them to try foods because they have ownership, and really and truly..I just simply love a big bowl of all the goods.
And this salad is one of those types of dishes that I can always count on. I often serve this with grilled or roasted shrimp or chicken and we toss it right into our salads. The dressing is an absolute favorite and brings the dish to life. It’s so simple but so bright and fresh for this heavy-eating time of year!
Winter Power Salad with Lemon Honey Vinaigrette
For the vinaigrette
2/3 Cup Extra Virgin Olive Oil
1/2 Cup Fresh Squeezed Lemon Juice (from approx 2 lemons)
2 Tablespoons Honey
1 Garlic Clove, grated or pressed
1 Teaspoon Sea Salt
1/4 Teaspoon Black Pepper￼
For the Salad
10-12 Ounces Baby Spinach
1 1/2 Cups Cooked Quinoa (at room temperature or cooked ahead and chilled)
2 Pink Lady or Jazz Apples, thinly sliced
2 Avocados, thinly sliced
1/3 Cup Dried Cherries
Crumbled Bleu Cheese, for topping
Cracked Pepper + Sea Salt
For the Vinaigrette
Place all ingredients in a mason jar, cover with a lid and shake vigorously until well mixed. Alternately, whisk all ingredients except olive oil in a small bowl until combined; stream in olive oil, while whisking, until well mixed. Serve immediately or store in the refrigerator for up to 5 days.
For the Salad
Place spinach and quinoa in a large bowl and toss with 1/4 cup of the vinaigrette. Divide into bowls, top with remaining ingredients and drizzle additional desired vinaigrette over the top. Finish with cracked pepper and sea salt.