When it comes to lettuce-type salads, I believe that are two groups of people: 1) those that fruit 2) those that do not fruit. I fall heavily into group number #1. I love all fruit in all salads–berries, apples, citrus, grapes–I love it all. I think a good savory salad needs a little sweet and a little juicy and a little crunchy to bring it all home. But there’s this guy…and I live with him…and I cook for him…and I call him Hubby…and he, as a general rule, strongly dislikes fruit in salads. He’s really picky about his fruit all around actually: it can’t be cooked and it should stand alone. I’ve even heard him say he doesn’t like strawberry Pop-Tarts because he doesn’t like cooked fruit. Yep, he considers Pop-Tarts to be cooked fruit. *Sigh* Ya gotta love him. But here’s the kicker: Hubby likes Strawberry Vinaigrette. Not raspberry vinaigrette, even though that’s the one they sell at grocery stores everywhere; it has to be strawberry. *Double sigh*
So of course, I decided to make my own. The first time I made this dressing I thought I was way off the mark because the creamy pink concoction swirling around my food processor did not look like any strawberry vinaigrette I’d ever seen. But it actually tasted really, really good. It was sweet and tangy and creamy and just savory enough. So I rolled with it and called it Strawberry Salad Dressing instead of a vinaigrette and now it’s one of my favorite dressings to make.
A good blender or food processor is going to do all the work for you in this one. You could strain the seeds and the pulp out of the pureed strawberries for a slightly thinner, smoother dressing, but I would much rather leave the whole mess in the bowl of my processor and get to the eating part that much faster. And because this dressing is so full of flavor on it’s own, it’s a good idea to keep the salad components super simple. The dressing is the star of this show! Romaine lettuce is hearty enough to stand up to the dressing, but mild enough to let the dressing shine. Sunflower seeds add a salty crunch and goat cheese is creamy and tangy and plays off the dressing perfectly. If you want to make it an entree salad, add some warm grilled chicken and a side of bread and dinner is done.
Sound off below or on my Facebook page and let me know if you are in the Fruit Camp or the Not to Fruit Camp. And also let me know if Hubby is not the only one with such bizarre fruit rules 😉
- 1 cup strawberries, roughly chopped
- Juice of 1/2 a lemon
- 1 T yellow or whole grain mustard
- 1/8 tsp salt
- 1/4 tsp black pepper
- 1 small clove or scant 1/2 tsp minced garlic
- 1/2 c olive oil
- Romaine lettuce
- Sunflower seeds
- Goat cheese
- Add strawberries to the bowl of a food processor or a high quality blender. Blend until well pureed
- Add the lemon juice, mustard and seasonings. Blend until well mixed
- With the processor running, slowly stream in the olive oil. Blend until smooth and creamy
- To serve, toss lettuce with dressing just until coated and top with nuts and cheese
- Store leftover dressing in refrigerator for 3-4 days.