Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Chopped Spinach Salad with Mulberries, Roasted Beets, Goat Cheese, & Walnuts



Walking along a trail, in a park that runs along the Columba River, I found mulberries. At least I think that’s what they were. I ate a bunch before asking an elderly couple, and their Lhasa Apso passing by, if they knew what I was eating. The dog didn’t talk much, but the couple said the berries were quite edible. I had to agree. They were sweet and unlike any berry I'd had before. (I know what you're thinking, don't eat the unidentified berries you dummy! Trust me though, I've eaten much worse.)

Along this park are many mulberry trees, plum trees, apple trees, and fortresses of blackberry bushes. It makes me wonder why we don’t plant fruit trees in our parks anymore. I can just imagine what it was like fifty or more years ago walking along the river, knowing you could stop for a snack of fresh fruit anytime you wanted. What a remarkable legacy to leave behind.

Jesse and I picked a napkin full of mulberries to make this salad before heading home. I look forward to going back when the plums are ready.

Ingredients
Small beets
Fresh Spinach
Walnuts
Mulberries
Fig flavored goat cheese or plain goat cheese
½ cup Pompeian Pomegranate Infused Balsamic Vinegar
½ cup extra virgin olive oil, plus a little more for beets
Salt & freshly cracked pepper

Instructions
1. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. Line a rimmed baking sheet with foil.

2. Cut off the beet stocks and roots and scrub well under water to clean. Pat dry and rub the beats with olive oil and sprinkle with salt. Place on the baking sheet and cook for 50-60 minutes until easily pierced with a knife. Cool, peel, and slice beets.

3. Toast the walnuts in a bowl in 30 second increments on high until toasted and fragrant. Chop into large pieces.

4. Chop spinach or use baby spinach and arrange on individual plates. Top with sliced beets, some crumbled goat cheese, walnuts, and mulberries.

5. Shake together vinegar and oil. Drizzle a little over salads. Then sprinkle salad with salt and freshly cracked pepper. Serve immediately.

By Laura Flowers


26 comments:

girlichef said...

I love that you are such a fruit "snatcher" (as it should be, mind you)!! This is a delicious salad :D

Chris Stonecipher said...

This recipe looks delicious. Thank you for sharing

The Cooking Photographer said...

Lol I know I am bad. I just can't help it.

Lori R. said...

You're suppose to ask what they are first, then sample the find! Aren't mulberries real sweet? We have them all over the farm, but I haven't ventured there yet( I've only lived here 32 years). The salad looks delich... I haven't done the pizza yet, still going to do that!

EMC said...

Oooh, I love roasting beets. Have you ever tried the golden beets? They're so pretty in salads.

The Cooking Photographer said...

Lori!!!!!!! Go pick some for me!!! :)

The Cooking Photographer said...

Erin, no I haven't gotten my hands on any. Ever! Do you know where to find them?

The Cooking Photographer said...

Lol ok other than someone else's garden. One of these days I'm going to get in trouble!

Cal Orey, Author-Intuitive said...

I like this salad. Beets? Fuzzy texture. Can't do 'em. Ice cream, anyone? After the salad, of course.
www.calorey.blogspot.com

Mary said...

What lovely colors. I love roasted beets so any recipe containing them is heaven for me.

sherri said...

Laura- I've never been a fan of beets, but this recipe makes me want to give them another try! Looks amazing.

Christie's Corner said...

We have two mulberry trees and never get to eat any because of the squirrels.

Like Sherri, I'm not a fan of beets, but don't mind them raw. They taste a bit like carrots. I'd be tempted to substitute grated raw beets, but since I am losing the mulberry war, the point is likely moot.

Morta Di Fame said...

This looks gorgeous! Perfect combos!

ButterYum said...

I wouldn't know a mulberry if I tripped over one!

Q. said...

I HATED beets until I had them in a salad very similar to this. The combination of beets, goat cheese, and candied pecans made me a beet lover:) Beautiful salad. One of my "go-to" summer dishes.

sherri said...

Laura- in response to your question back at my site, I have no update on Tyson. I should find something out by Monday.

Sylvia said...

The salad looks delicious and tasty. I like a lot
your blog, I found here great recipes and photos as well

Finsmom said...

This sounds like an amazing salad - so many interesting and tasty ingredients working together here!

darnold23 said...

This is one of my "I love it salads" even without the mulberries. How nice that you found them, however:) I loved for you to join us in Crock Pot Wednesdays on diningwithdebbie.blogspot.com. It's going to be fun and there are some awesome prizes for this inaugural event. Come check it out and sign up with Mister Linky.

Ciao Chow Linda said...

Beets in a salad is one of my favorites. the mulberries makes it even more interesting. The earrings will be in the mail this week since I just got home yesterday.

Danielle said...

I found you through the google reader top recommendations (way cool!!) hope you don't mind if I stick around for a bit. Beautiful salad.

The Cooking Photographer said...

Wow cool Danielle! I am so glad you are here.

Tami (Pixeltrash) said...

This looks wonderful. I would say... don't eat the berries! They might be poison. LOL! But you threw caution to the wind and were lucky.
I love the name of your blog. I take photos of the food I cook and blog about it too. It is fun!

The Cooking Photographer said...

Thank-you Tami. Taking pictures is not just fun, it helps me remember what the heck we've been eating around here! :)

Laura

Jo. said...

Lovely photo, delicious salad. What to say more...?

Kate said...

The salad looks delicious! I love beets! I have never heard of a mulberry....except for the mulberry tree and I only used the leaves to feed the silkworms!

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