You don’t make friends with salad.
Unless your salad is doused in a creamy dressing, like possibly one that *accidentally* had a few spoonfuls of bacon fat thrown into it. Then you’ll probably make more friends than you know what to do with (perhaps you can decide which ones you’ll let stick around by asking them to clean out your nasty bacon-grease-scunged-up pan).
It feels like awhile since I last threw a salad your way, mostly because as soon as there’s so much as a hint of crispness in the air, I reject any raw or otherwise cold dishes, opting instead to blanket myself in a slew of braises and soups. Spinach salad isn’t really something that gets me particularly fired up either as far as salads go. Too many memories of forced interminglings between spinach, strawberries, and goat cheese, I suppose (apologies if you’ve ever had me over and fed me this…it’s nothing personal, I would just rather die than eat another spinach-strawberry salad at this point).
Both spinach salad recipes for this week’s blog entry are different though. Neither of them pretends that it’s somehow desirable to have super-sweet fruit flavours mixed in among the spinach, nor does either recipe use cheese as a way to mask the downfalls of the salad itself. Instead, these two most different – yet most delicious – variants of spinach salad boast creamy dressings (one buttermilk ranch, one sesame-soy) plus punches of vibrant, and more importantly, SAVOURY, flavour. Both salads are equally prepared to take your boring, womp-womp-womp associations with spinach salad and turn them on their heads.
Bacon + spicy pickled shallots + buttermilk ranch = yes puh-lease! Click here for an anything-but-boring re-imagining of classic spinach salad.
Toasted sesame + bonito + soy = umami flavourtown! Click here for some insanely craveable spinach gomae.