Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Grilled or Roasted Vegetable Spinach Salad with Warm Bacon Dressing

Seasonal vegetables, roasted or grilled, make a perfect spinach salad when served with a warm bacon dressing.
Seasonal vegetables, roasted or grilled, make a perfect spinach salad when served with a warm bacon dressing.

Roasted Vegetable Spinach Salad

This is the other salad I promised you the back when I posted those summer salads recently, and boy was it worth the wait. With the weather being so hot, I have been in the salad mode and was thinking that I had not posted a spinach salad. Then I thought... why not take some of the great summer vegetables that are beginning to come in right now - summer squash, corn, asparagus, peppers, green beans, and tomatoes, to name a few - and incorporate them into a classic-style spinach salad! And then, I thought... one of the best ways to bring out the flavors of vegetables is to roast them, and well, this salad was born. And, it did not disappoint.

Don't want to crank up the oven? Just do your veggies on the grill - that's perfect!  Use a grilling basket for the smaller veggies that might otherwise slip through the grate, and yes, while I did this salad in the midst of summer, it'll be a great one for those fall and winter veggies later on too.

I settled on corn - which I just roasted whole on the cob and then cut off, some asparagus, crookneck squash, red onion, a new potato and then I just tossed on a few slices of fresh Roma tomato just before serving. I also used the Dole Baby Spinach with Tender Reds which I love over just plain spinach.

This was so fresh and so good, that I can tell you I will definitely be revamping this salad when the fall veggies come around.

Recipe: Roasted Vegetable Spinach Salad
with Warm Bacon Dressing

©From the Kitchen of Deep South Dish
Prep time: 10 min |Cook time: 45 min | Yield: About 4 but variable

  • Mixture of assorted, seasonal vegetables (see below)
  • 1 large onion
  • 3 cloves of garlic
  • 2 tablespoons of extra virgin olive oil
  • 2 sprigs of thyme
  • 2 sprigs of rosemary
  • Pinch of kosher salt, or to taste
  • Pinch of freshly cracked black pepper, or to taste
  • 1 (16 ounce) bag of baby spinach
  • Warm Bacon Dressing
  • Crumbled bacon, to garnish

Preheat oven to 425 degrees F.

Cut any larger veggies and onion into chunks and roast those first. Add the smaller or more tender veggies - such as tomatoes, asparagus or corn off of the kernel - in the last 10 to 15 minutes of roasting, and if grilling, cook those in a vegetable grill basket.

Before roasting, add the garlic and toss all the veggies with olive oil until well covered. Strip one stem of thyme and rosemary and sprinkle over the veggies. Season with salt and pepper and toss the other stem of thyme and rosemary on the tray. Roast for about 20 to 30 minutes, stirring and turning occasionally. Add in the asparagus and cook an additional 10 to 15 minutes or until all the veggies reach the desired level of roasting you prefer.

Remove the garlic and snip off the end. Squeeze the garlic out into the skillet into the hot bacon dressing and whisk until it is blended in. Taste and adjust seasonings to your preference.

Lay out a bed of lettuce on each place. Distribute the roasted vegetables among each plate and drizzle generously with the warm bacon dressing.

Cook's Note: Don't want to crank up the oven? Just do your choice of veggies on the grill - that's perfect!

*Summer Veggie Ideas: New potatoes, carrots, red, yellow or green bell peppers, tomatoes, asparagus, summer squash, zucchini, corn, eggplant, mushrooms, green beans.

*Winter Veggie Ideas: Sweet potatoes, eggplant, yellow finn, yukon gold and russet potatoes, butternut squash, carrots, turnips, parsnips, onion, rutabaga, brussel sprouts


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©Deep South Dish
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Posted by on June 17, 2009
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