Strawberry Salad with Poppy Seed Dressing

Strawberry Salad with Poppy Seed Dressing

Makes 3 servings.

For the Salad:
1/2 cup raw pecans
1/4 small red onion, very thinly sliced
1 bag Red Dog salad mix
1 pint Red Dog strawberries, hulled and quartered
1/2 cup feta cheese, crumbled

For the Dressing:
1/8 cup balsamic vinegar
1.5 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
3/4 tablespoons poppy seeds
3/4 tablespoons honey
1/4 teaspoon Dijon mustard
1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
Black pepper to taste

Toast the pecans: Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Spread the pecans in a single layer on an ungreased baking sheet. Bake for 8 to 10 minutes, until the pecans smell fragrant and the center of a pecan is tan when the pecan is broken in half. Transfer to a cutting board and roughly chop.

Place the sliced onions in a bowl and cover with cold water. Let sit while you prepare the rest of the salad (this keeps their flavor but removes the harsh onion bite).

Prepare the dressing: In small mixing bowl or large liquid measuring cup, whisk together all of the dressing ingredients (vinegar, oil, poppy seeds, honey, mustard, salt, and pepper) until well combined. (Alternatively, you can shake the ingredients together in a mason jar with a tight-fitting lid).

Assemble the salad: Place the spinach in a great big serving bowl. Add the strawberries. Drain the red onion and add it as well. Drizzle about half of the dressing over the salad and toss to coat the leaves. Assess the amount of dressing. You want the lettuce leaves to be nicely moistened but not swimming in dressing. Add a little more if needed to suit your preferences. Add the feta and pecans. Toss lightly to combine. Serve immediately, with extra dressing on the side as desired.