Salads Virginia

Spring Greens Salad with Fresh Strawberries

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Let’s talk about strawberries. Fresh, ripe spring strawberries are awesome in so many ways.

Normally, they’re the first fruit to ripen in the spring, but since we’ve had such a weird year weatherwise, we’re only just now getting some of the truly fresh and ripe ones.

But we do get some beautiful, fresh, ripe strawberries in Virginia!

Strawberries came to Virginia from France in the 1500s. They took to the area and started growing larger and a deeper red than before. Paired up with other strains over time, they continue to thrive and make themselves happily at home.

You guys have heard me say this before, but I do believe that food is one of the best ways to get to know a place and its people. Who grows or raises produce or animals there and why? How did those things and the people who brought them there first come there? What shaped their tastes and their methods? All of these things shape the texture of a place and the people who live there.

And learning about those things at our farmer’s market, at our regular market, at farms throughout the area, and from friends is one of the things we’ve absolutely loved about being here and getting to know Virginia.

One of my favorite ways to use beautiful ripe strawberries is in a fresh spring greens salad. Lately, this combination of spinach and arugula, goat cheese, baked chicken, and strawberries with olive oil and balsamic vinegar has been our favorite. The balsamic really mixes nicely with the sweet flavor of the berries and both soak nicely into the chicken and goat cheese.

Best of all? If you have some already baked or grilled chicken breast and spun greens, you can make this tasty and hearty salad in about 5 minutes!

Spring Greens Salad with Fresh Strawberries

Serves 2.

What You’ll Need:

  • 2 cups fresh baby spinach, washed and spun
  • 2 cups fresh arugula, washed and spun
  • 2 cups sliced fresh strawberries
  • 1 cooked chicken breast, finely diced
  • 1/2 cup crumbled goat cheese
  • 1/4 cup candied walnut or pecan pieces
  • olive oil
  • balsamic vinegar

How to Make It:

1. In a large bowl, toss together the spinach and arugula with the strawberries, chicken breast, and candied walnut pieces.

2. Divide into 2 bowls. Sprinkle goat cheese over the top of the salad. Drizzle with olive oil and balsamic vinegar to taste.

3. Serve immediately.

I love pairing this summer salad with a crisp and refreshing summer beer. We are loving Goose Island’s Summer Time Kölsch lately, but we also like it with Sam Adams Summer Ale and Kona Brewing Company’s Longboard Lager.

Now that’s a tasty finish to a warm almost-summer day – and a fun opportunity to learn a little bit more about this amazing place we’ve called home for almost three years now {time flies!!!}.

Any other delicious strawberry recipes we should try?

About the ChefKristin

Career Army officer with a tendency toward workaholism. On the side, self taught cook, carpenter, and gardener, working to build a beautiful life for my family. Trying to tilt my balance in the right direction.

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