June 2014 Newsletter: Spinach, Strawberry & Avocado Salad

We often blend spinach, avocados and strawberries in our healthy morning smoothies, and that inspired us to create this beautiful, simple, summer spinach salad.

Dressing

  • ¼ cup light-tasting olive oil
  • ¼ cup freshly squeezed orange juice
  • 2 tbsp freshly squeezed lemon juice
  • 2 tbsp Dijon mustard
  • 1 tbsp apple cider vinegar
  • 1 tbsp honey
  • 2 tsp poppy seeds (or black chia seeds; see cooking tip)
  • 1 tsp each grated orange zest and grated gingerroot (do not use dried)
  • ¼ tsp each salt and freshly ground black pepper

Salad

  • 1 5 oz/142 g container fresh baby spinach
  • 2 cups sliced fresh strawberries (the fresher, the better!)
  • 1 large avocado, pitted and diced
  • 1/3 cup sliced almonds (lightly toasted if possible)
  • 1/3 cup very thinly sliced red onion
  • Optional: Crumbled feta cheese to sprinkle on top

Directions

To make the dressing, add all dressing ingredients EXCEPT poppy seeds (or chia seeds) to a blender and whirl until emulsified. A small, Magic Bullet-type blender works great for this purpose. Stir in poppy seeds or chia seeds and refrigerate for at least 1 hour before serving.  Give dressing a good stir or shake before using. Note: You will not use all the dressing. Keep leftover dressing refrigerated for up to 3 days.

Place salad ingredients in a large bowl. Add 1/3 of the dressing and mix gently with tongs, being careful not to squish the avocado.  Add more dressing if needed and serve immediately.  Top with crumbled feta cheese, if desired.

Makes 6 side-salad servings

Salad per serving (no dressing):

96 calories, 6.5 g total fat (0.8 g saturated fat), 2.7 g protein, 9 g carbohydrate, 4 g fiber, 0 mg cholesterol, 21 mg sodium

Dressing (per 2 tbsp serving):

101 calories, 9 g total fat (1.6 g saturated fat), 0.7 g protein, 5 g carbohydrate, 0.3 g fiber, 0 mg cholesterol, 162 mg sodium

Cooking Tip: Using black chia seeds will help thicken the dressing (slightly) as it chills in the fridge.  Topping the salad with sliced, grilled chicken makes it a filling summertime meal.