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Dinner Party Salad: Beet-Orange-Avocado Salad with Homemade Balsamic-Dijon Vinaigrette

3 Comments

I don’t know about you, but I absolutely adore salads.

Beet-Orange-Avocado Salad with Balsamic-Dijon Vinaigrette

A salad can be an appetizer, a main dish, or a side dish.  I’m sure it could be a dessert, too.  But let’s not go there (I need chocolate).  You can make it vegetarian or vegan.  You can pile on slices of steak or chicken or shredded pork.  Nuts? Sure. Fruit? Why not!   Every different topping makes a unique flavor profile.

Because plain salad can get a bit boring, I like to load my greens with tons of toppings — that way I get something different and flavorful in every bite.  This salad has earthy beets, sweet oranges, buttery avocado.  Walnuts and green onions add crunch, the cheese adds a salty tang.  The dressing, with the balsamic and smoky cumin and dijon, is the perfect compliment (probably something like “Oh Salad, you’re beautiful!  You’re delicious!”).  Another perk?  You can use many of the same vinaigrette ingredients listed below for one of the entrees we’ll be sharing next week!  So here is just one of MANY salad options for your spring dinner party; enjoy!

Ingredients

Beet-Orange-Avocado Salad
Serves 4-5

5 ounces Spring/Baby Spinach Salad Mix
1 package (8 ounces) Melissa’s baby beets (or about 5 baby beets, cooked, peeled and cooled), sliced
1 ripe avocado, diced
1 to 2 navel orange(s), peeled, segmented and chopped into bite-size pieces
1/3 cup chopped walnuts
3 stalks green onions, chopped (both white and green parts)
1/4 cup crumbled feta or goat cheese

Balsamic-Dijon Vinaigrette
{Modified from Emeril Lagasse’s Basic Balsamic}
Makes about 1 cup

3/4 cup olive oil
1/4 cup balsamic vinegar
2 tablespoons lemon juice
2 cloves garlic, finely chopped
2 teaspoons dijon mustard
1 teaspoon light brown sugar
1 teaspoon cumin
1/4 teaspoon shallot salt (I like Penzey’s)
1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper

Beet-Orange-Avocado Salad with Balsamic-Dijon Vinaigrette

Instructions

1. Place all dressing ingredients into a mason jar or other air-tight container and shake for 1 minute to combine. Chill in fridge.

2. Fill bowl with salad mix and top with your salad ingredients: beets, orange pieces, avocado, green onion, walnuts and feta or goat cheese. Top with dressing.

Beet-Orange-Avocado Salad with Balsamic-Dijon Vinaigrette

What are some of YOUR favorite salad toppings?  I love me some banana peppers…

xo Jaime

3 thoughts on “Dinner Party Salad: Beet-Orange-Avocado Salad with Homemade Balsamic-Dijon Vinaigrette

  1. where do you find Melissa’s baby beets? I am a beet snob. I love mine grown in the garden BEST. I bought a 3-beet bunch at the store and I thought they tasted tin-like. I think the ones in cans taste better than those I bought fresh from the store. Always searching for good beets in the off growing season.

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