Summer is already here! Are you ready for it? You surely need some light and fresh recipes to beat the summer heat! This refreshing Strawberry Walnut Salad is exactly what you need. It also features spinach, blue cheese and cranberries. Oh and don’t forget the fantastic poppy seed dressing! This salad just screams summer!
Hooray! Finally, it is here! What? You don’t know what I am talking about? Oh come on! Seriously? Look at the calendar! Today is the first day of summer! These are the words I planned to start this post with. But… You live, you learn. It seems that summer starts differently in various countries of the world! I was actually shocked when I found it out. All my life, I have known only one date that marks the beginning of the hottest season of the year – June 1st. However, today the almighty Google told me that in the United States (the most represented country in visits to my blog) and in some other Northern countries the first day of summer comes when the summer solstice occurs (usually on June 20st or 21th). To say it simply, summer starts when a day, that has the longest period of daylight, comes. Sorry guys, I can’t remake myself! For me, summer starts today, on June 1st, and I am starting a series of summer recipes on the blog! I have already planned tons of salads, refreshing drinks and other cool stuff. Can’t wait!
Ah, summer… I love you for your long days and warm nights, for the loads of fresh berries, veggies and fruit you bring, for the glorious nature, for the picnics and grilling, for the blue lakes and rivers, for the light summer clothing (my baby boy agrees; oh he does), and for the many other beauties! Talking about fresh produce, I am already starting to make use of it.
Yesterday I was able to find some fresh spinach in my local market and… Strawberries! Yes, they are already here. My favorite berries, together with blueberries. Can’t live without them. Oh and just look at all the health benefits! When you have fresh spinach and strawberries on hand, the first thing that pops in your head is to make a summer salad! Well, at least that’s what pops in my head. I had some leftover walnuts in my kitchen so I decided to throw them in too. That’s how this heavenly Strawberry Walnut Salad was born!
So… Let’s see what we have here. Strawberries, spinach, walnuts, that’s it? Hell no! I also added some crumbled blue cheese (love it) and dried cranberries in it. I also topped all this goodness with a fantastic poppy seed dressing! Poppy seeds, dijon mustard, honey… When you combine all these things together, the result is pure awesomeness. This dressing goes so well with our salad ingredients. This strawberry walnut salad is surely a perfect way to start your summer. Just look at all these colors! And it’s just the first salad from the long list I plan to make for the blog this summer. Can’t wait!
P.S. I bought so many strawberries that I ate a pound, made few portions of this salad, but still had some left. Then I remembered this amazing Strawberry Rhubarb Bread I made few years ago. A winner!
For the salad:
- 1/2 cup walnuts toasted and chopped
- 1 1/2 cups strawberries hulled and sliced
- 4 cups baby spinach
- 1 ⁄2 cup crumbled blue cheese
- 1/3 Cup dried cranberries
For the dressing:
- 1/3 cup olive oil
- 2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
- 2 tablespoons honey
- 1/2 teaspoon dijon mustard
- 1 tablespoon poppy seeds
- salt and pepper
- Make the poppy seed dressing by whisking all the ingredients together until combined. Add all the salad ingredients in a bowl and toss lightly with the desired amount of dressing. Enjoy!