Mixed berries, pineapple and gorgonzola come together for a great summer salad with a ginger-poppyseed dressing.
Many years ago, a far-flung group of us came together every year for a ski vacation. We rotated it a bit between Deer Valley (Utah), Aspen, and other places in Colorado. One by one, we stopped skiing for any number of reasons, and after not seeing each other for several years, we cranked the group back up. We still rotate the locale, but now it’s between our homes, and we kicked off Part II almost 10 years ago in Chicago. My friend S, who lives downtown arranged for us to take the architectural tour down the Chicago River (which was one of the best things I’ve done anywhere!), an art walk in her area of art shops, and a picnic at Millenium Park for a concert under the stars. But one of the highlights of the weekend was the dinner she hosted at her condo the first night we all arrived, and this salad was one of the memorable dishes of the night.
Be sure not to over mix this salad before serving. The berries are tender, and easily bruised and crushed.
We have a nut-free house, not including the people living in it of course, but this would be wonderful with candied walnuts!
This is not designed to be a precise salad. If you prefer more berries and less pineapple, go for it!
Many poppyseed dressings have buttermilk, but I opted for a lighter dressing using yogurt. Also, if you don’t care for ginger, it’s easy to eliminate, although it doesn’t dominate the dressing.
This is a great salad for a picnic! Just be sure NOT to dress it ahead of time.
Skinned poached chicken breasts would be ideal for this salad. Roast chicken is obviously fine too. The difference between the two is the texture.
- 32 ounces strawberries
- 12 ounces blueberries
- 12 ounces blackberries
- 1 pineapple
- 2 ounces gorgonzola (or, to taste)
- 4 cups mâche rosettes (or baby spinach)
- candied walnuts (optional)
- ¼ cup minced sweet onion (or white onion)
- 1½ teaspoon grated fresh ginger
- 1 teaspoon Dijon Country Mustard
- 1 teaspoon kosher salt, or to taste
- ¼ cup of honey (I used blackberry honey)
- 1 ½ tablespoon blackberry syrup (or substitute honey)
- ⅓ cup of raw apple cider vinegar
- ¼ cup of extra virgin olive oil
- ¼ cup plain yogurt (I used full fat)
- 1½ teaspoons of poppy seeds
- Hull and slice the strawberries. Place in a large bowl along with the blueberries and blackberries.
- Slice off the top and bottom from the pineapple, and slice off the sides to reveal the fruit of the pineapple. Cut in rings and dice. Add to the bowl.
- Crumble the gorgonzola, and add to the bowl along with the greens and walnuts - if using. Do not toss.
- Whisk together all of the dressing ingredients through the apple cider vinegar. Whisk in the olive oil, and then the yogurt and poppy seeds. Drizzle the dressing over the salad, and very lightly toss. Serve with additional dressing on the side.