Springtime Spinach Salad

This is the salad I provided for our Sunday cookout. We were talking earlier about what fruits were available at this time of year. Here is a vegetable that is making its appearance now – crisp, green spinach.

I bought the fresh spinach all-ready-prepared in a bag, in the refrigerated section of the grocery. I still like to wash it before use, although the directions state it is ready to use.

Since I was using the entire bag, I cut it open down the middle and pulled a handful at a time. Then I either snapped the stems off the young tender leaves or else held the stem and pulled it down through the middle. The stems got discarded, as well as the wilted and otherwise sad looking leaves. Cold water was poured over the leaves in the pan and the spinach got swished around. I used a salad spinner to remove the water from the leaves after gently placing them in the spinner. But if you don’t have a spinner, you can lift them out of the water and squeeze them dry in a clean towel.

Here is the recipe for Springtime Spinach Salad:

1 large bunch fresh spinach, torn into pieces
1 (6 oz.) can mandarin oranges, well drained
6 strawberries, washed, hulled, and halved

Wash spinach and squeeze out excess water. In salad bowl, add oranges and strawberries and toss lightly. Cover and refrigerate until ready to serve.

Dressing:

1/4 cup sugar
1/4 cup vegetable oil
3 tablespoons vinegar
1 tablespoon minced onion
1 tablespoon poppy seeds
1 tablespoon sesame seeds
1/2 teaspoon paprika
1/2 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
Salt to taste

In small jar with tight fitting cover, combine all ingredients. Shake well until sugar is dissolved and mixture is a little thick. Pour small amount over salad just before serving – a little goes a long way. Toss to coat. Add more dressing if needed.

There you have it – fresh, crisp, with just a bit of tang. Oh yes, colorful and nutritious, too!

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