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Spinach salad is a dish made from fresh, leafy green spinach mixed with any combination of raw vegetables, fruits and nuts. It is often served as a side dish with meat or fish, at events such as barbeques. Alternatively, meat, fish, eggs or cheese may be added to the spinach salad ingredients, which is then served with freshly-baked bread and farm butter. The high level of antioxidants contained in each portion of this dish makes it a popular choice for health-conscious eaters.
Ranked among the world’s healthiest vegetables, spinach is rich in vitamins and minerals. The classic spinach salad uses most of the same ingredients as the typical green salad, including spinach, tomato, cucumber and onion. Finely chopped bits of crispy fried bacon are added to the salad, which is traditionally served while the bacon is still warm.
Multiple variations exist on how a spinach salad is made, including adding fruit for a touch of sweetness in the dish. The way to make a strawberry spinach salad is with washed baby spinach, sliced, toasted almonds, quartered strawberries and diced cucumber. Combine the ingredients together in a bowl and toss them together. Mix a salad dressing made from lemon juice, white wine vinegar, sugar, vegetable oil and poppy seeds, and drizzle it over the salad just before serving it.
A cranberry spinach salad is another version of the salad using fruit. Make a basic salad using young, washed leaves, chopped tomato, sliced red onion and a handful of dried cranberries. Caramelize almonds or peanuts in a pan with a little brown sugar and add them to the dish. Cranberries are exceptionally high in vitamin C, which makes them a healthy choice for a winter salad dish.
For a delicious variation on the standard spinach salad, combine the usual ingredients in a bowl. Turn it into a spinach walnut salad by adding a handful of crunchy, chunky nuts and crumbled feta cheese over the top. Serve with a simple dressing made with balsamic vinaigrette blended with olive oil, salt and pepper and sugar.
Try a Greek-style spinach salad by tossing tomatoes, cucumber, onions and peppers with the spinach leaves. Add sliced, pitted calamata olives and chunks of goat feta and toss well. Drizzle with extra virgin olive oil spiced with a pinch of salt and crushed black peppercorns. Decorate with sprigs of fresh basil and mint for an interesting twist to the salad.