Leaf salads don't have to be boring!

06/22/2012 2:27 PM

06/22/2012 2:44 PM

Spinach Salad with Charred Corn & Avocado Vinaigrette

News flashleaf salads are only boring if they are made that way.

The poor, poor, pitiful salad - it never gets any respect or any of the culinary spotlight.

Mostly recognized as a side item, filler or something to eat so we feel healthy. It is time to stand up for leaf salads and make them more than an afterthought.

Prepare a salad that is exciting and vibrate, full of flavor and color, loaded with good things that taste great.

Accent with a dressing (something other than ranch or blue cheese) to elevate it into something it deserves to bea stand alone “star!”


Serves 4 as an Entrée or 6 as a Side Item

1 pound baby spinach
3 each, roma tomatoes, deseed & small diced
1/2 each, red onions, thin slices into half moons
8 ounces gorgonzola cheese, crumbled
1 pound bacon, sliced into strips, cooked and drained
1 cup sunflower seeds
1 pound asparagus, oiled, seasoned, grilled and left at room temperature


1 each, avocado, half, remove seed, scoop out flesh
1 clove fresh garlic, smashed
2 tablespoons cilantro, leaves only
1/2 teaspoon Kosher salt
1/4 teaspoon black pepper
Juice of lemon
1/2 cup rice vinegar
1 cup, canola oil
2 cobs corn, parboiled, oiled, seasoned, grilled, slightly charring, removed from cob
Place all of the ingredients except the corn in a food processor or blender until smooth. Add half of the charred corn and pulse just to combine. Corn should still be visible.


Assemble salad in this order, either on separate plates or family style on one platter: spinach, tomato, onion, gorgonzola cheese, bacon, sunflower seeds and grilled asparagus, and top with remaining corn.

Serve the charred corn avocado vinaigrette on the side.

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