Recently, I was cooking for a friend’s birthday and she requested a salad with berries. With my farmer’s market filled with local strawberries, my fondness for arugula and my belief that everything-is-better-with-avocado, this salad was a no brainer. I added some walnuts for crunch, some sheep’s milk cheese for salty-umaminess and a lemony-sherry dressing. Birthday worthy.
Strawberry and Arugula Salad
Makes four small salads or two large salads
For the dressing:
½ teaspoon Dijon mustard
1 teaspoon mince shallot
1 tablespoon sherry wine vinegar
1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
6 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
Salt and pepper to taste
For the salad:
4 cups baby arugula, washed and dried
1 cup strawberries, stems removed and cut into bite-size pieces
1 avocado, pitted, peeled and cut into slices
¼ cup coarsely chopped walnuts (I like to toast them for a better texture)
¼ cup grated pecorino or manchego cheese
1) Prepare the vinaigrette: Combine the mustard, shallot, vinegar and lemon juice in a small bowl. Drizzle the olive oil into the bowl while whisking to blend. Season with salt and pepper.
2) Combine the arugula, strawberries, avocado and nuts in a bowl. Add the vinaigrette to taste, salt and pepper and toss. Divide the salad among the plates and garnish each with the cheese.