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Twist on a Classic Salad

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Last night my roommates and I had a couple girlfriends over for wine, snacks and chatter. A few days ago, KD had suggested we make a spinach salad with strawberries, almonds and Humboldt Fog with raspberry vinaigrette. I took her suggestion, but made my own alterations to the salad, which I think were quite a success!

  • 4 cups baby spinach, washed
  • 1 pint of strawberries, ends trimmed and sliced
  • 4 oz Cypress Grove Purple Haze Chevre (or some other herbed goat cheese if you don’t have access to this most amazing variety)
  • 1 cup pecans, chopped
  • 1/4 cup orange muscat champagne vinegar (available at Trader Joe’s)
  • 1 TB and 1 tsp olive oil (separate)
  • salt and pepper to taste

Toast the pecans in about 1 tsp olive oil over a medium-low flame, tossing frequently so they do not burn. Let cool and set aside. Crumble the Chevre and add it to a large salad bowl with the spinach and strawberries, adding the pecans once they have cooled. Whisk the TB of olive oil into the vinegar and add salt and pepper to taste. Dress and toss just before serving.

This makes a great side salad, or as the main dish among several other appetizers (we also served smoked salmon, smoked trout, Midnight Moon and a baguette). I served the salad with 2011 Navarro Sauvignon Blanc, which is a smooth, slightly fruity wine with a soft acidity – a good match to this sweet and creamy salad!

About Kelsey

Kelsey is a food and wine lover residing in Napa, California, where she does marketing for a boutique wine collective. She previously lived in San Francisco for over six years, where her blogging journey began. She loves to cook seasonal meals and experiment with new wine pairings. She has been drinking and learning about wine with her father since she was 14, and cooking in the kitchen with her mother since she was 6. Both of her parents taught her well about seasoning and flavors, and she continues to learn more with every meal that is made.

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