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Friday, July 29, 2011

Best of 2011: Spinach Salad with Nectarine, Blueberries, and Lime Balsamic Vinaigrette

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I realize yesterday's Best of 2011 recipe had blueberries in it. However, they aren't the only food from the list in The Twelve Best Foods Cookbook that are a component in this salad. Any guesses as to what the "best" ingredient is here?


No surprise that this food makes the list. As the cookbook states,

  • Is loaded with folate, reduces the risk of heart disease, and helps protect against various cancers
  • Is a source of several other vitamins (C, K, beta-carotene) and Minerals (iron, calcium, zinc)
  • Is best eaten with citrus to make the iron easier to be used by the body (hence the inclusion of lime juice in this recipe)
I frequently use spinach in recipes, so this food from the list wasn't anything new to me. However, I was excited to find new options to use it, such as this salad. This salad is great for summer, when blueberries and nectarines are in season. It makes a small batch, to serve as a first course for four (or two, in our case), but you could easily multiply the ingredients to make a salad to serve a crowd. It was great as is, but could also benefit from some chopped toasted nuts (almonds, walnuts, or pecans!). 

Looking for other Twelve Best Food recipes?
Sweet Potatoes: Sweet Potato Butter

Walnuts: Broccoli Pesto Dip
Six more foods to go!!

One Year Ago: Blueberry Crumb Bars

Spinach Salad with Nectarine, Blueberries, and Lime Balsamic Vinaigrette
from The Twelve Best Foods Cookbook

-4 cups baby spinach (4 oz)
-1/4 cup mint leaves
-juice of 1/2 lime
-2 tsp balsamic vinegar
-1 tsp chopped shallot
-1/2 tsp salt
-1 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
-freshly ground black pepper
-1 nectarine, thinly sliced
-1/2 cup fresh blueberries (or 1/4 cup dried)

1. In a large mixing bowl, toss spinach with chopped mint leaves.
2. In a small bowl, combine lime juice, vinegar, shallot, and salt. Whisk in the oil and season to taste with pepper.
3. Pour the dressing over the greens, tossing to coat lightly. Divide the greens among 4 plates and top with nectarine slices and blueberries. Serve immediately.