Thursday, July 7, 2011

Spinach Salad with Poppyseed Dressing

While there are dozens of spinach salad recipes with similar ingredients, this particular version remains a favorite.   It is a perfect salad for spring and summer while strawberries are in season, and is beautiful at Christmastime with it's red and green color!  Recipe is from my dear friend and neighbor, Christine, in Mandeville, Louisiana.  

Spinach Salad with Poppyseed Dressing

1 10-oz bag baby Spinach
1 pint strawberries, sliced 
4 oz. crumbled bleu cheese **I used FETA instead**
1/2 cup roasted pecans 

Poppyseed Dressing

3/4 cup sugar
1/3 cup cider vinegar
1 1/2 T. grated onion
1 t. dry mustard
1/2 t. salt
5 or 6 shakes Tabasco sauce
1 cup vegetable oil **I use canola here**
1 1/2 t. poppy seeds

Combine first six ingredients in blender on low for 30 seconds.  On high, add oil slowly with a steady stream.  Blend 30 more seconds.  Add poppy seeds after blending is complete, stirring by hand to blend in.

To roast pecans, place on baking sheet in oven or toaster at about 300 degrees for 3-4 minutes.  WATCH CAREFULLY, as they burn quickly!  

Combine spinach and remaining ingredients and toss before serving.  **If you prefer, you can also assemble each individual serving on a plate, add salad toppings, and drizzle with the poppyseed dressing.  


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