Being healthy comes so much easier to me when the weather is warm. Does it come easy to you? The food is always so fresh—I mean, really, does anyone crave soup and chili in June? And the sunshine and warmth are just the perfect recipe for being outside and doing stuff. No need to hit up the gym for me! I’m too busy talking walks, going on hikes, slinging compost, and carrying bales of straw.
This summer berry salad is a perfect example. I’m not usually a big salad person, but when the lettuce is fresh and crisp from the garden and sweet, juicy fruits are ripe for the picking? How can I not put them into a beautiful, tasty salad? It’d be wrong not to!
This salad is a wonderful combination of sweet, savory, and tangy. I chose to use sharp cheddar cheese from my friends at Cabot (their Vermont Sharp? Amazing.), but it would also be amazing with some really good crumbled feta or blue cheese sprinkled on top. And if you wanted to make the dish a little more substantial, some thinly-sliced grilled chicken would be a great addition!
Let’s talk for a sec about this dressing—oh my gosh, this dressing! You know I love making my own salad dressing. Homemade dressings are easy, flavorful, and super cost-effective. They also let me customize the dressing flavor to the salad ingredients so that it’s just right. This lemon-poppyseed vinaigrette is tart, savory, fresh and the perfect way to balance out the sweetness of the berries and the nuttiness of the toasted almonds. It would also make an amazing chicken or shrimp marinade, and I can’t wait to try it as the dressing on a fresh pasta salad (kinda like my friend Jenn’s Confetti Pasta Salad—so good!). Even if you don’t make the salad (which, um, you should), you should definitely try out this dressing. It comes together in a flash, so you have nothing to lose! Enjoy.