Salad in a pie plate? Yes! This salad is better than pie! As a matter of fact, it’s my favorite way to eat strawberries. (Though strawberry pie is pretty amazing, too!)
Strawberries are the star in this savory salad which includes chunks of crisp cucumbers, diced red onion, fresh tarragon, creamy blue cheese; all drizzled with a rich and luscious aged balsamic vinegar. Quick and easy, this is the ultimate summer salad!
So I got these strawberries on sale. Maybe that’s why they look just a little tired. But you know, that’s life. We all get tired, but we’re still really good inside. So were these strawberries!
I love blue cheese. I will try every variety I can get my hands on. Here I used Point Reyes blue cheese. It’s a milder blue cheese that I find everywhere in my area. But if you are not a fan of blue cheese, goat cheese or feta would be great, too!
Now here is the important part of this salad. Because there is no olive oil or formal dressing, you MUST use an aged balsamic vinegar. They are thicker and richer, almost syrupy and really cling to the strawberries. There’s no comparison, really. They are kind of pricey. I used La Piana Gold Quality Aged Balsamic Vinegar which I got on sale at The Fresh Market for $22! (What I won’t do for a great salad)! Trader Joe’s has a good one, too, for about $15.
I like to plate the salad, and then drizzle the balsamic vinegar on. Everyone gets to put the amount they like (I like a lot)! And also, the strawberries and cukes are naturally watery creatures. So I don’t want any of this incredible vinegar to get watered down in my leftovers.
The thing I LOVE about this pretty summer salad is that the strawberries are really the mainstay of the salad. I purposely cut the cukes and onions really small, to let them add some color, crunch and flavor in the background. Likewise with the blue cheese. A little really goes a long way.
The next time you find yourself with an abundance of strawberries, think salad instead of pie. You are in for a really special treat!
- 6 cups of sliced strawberries (about 2 pounds)
- 1 cup of chopped English cucumber (seeds removed)
- ¼ cup of finely diced red onion
- ¼ pound of blue cheese, crumbled
- 1 Tablespoon of chopped fresh tarragon
- pinch of salt
- a few grinds of cracked pink peppercorns
- aged balsamic vinegar to drizzle ( I used La Piana Gold Quality Aged Balsamic Vinegar)
- Slice the strawberries ( I like to slice some, quarter some and cut small strawberries in half).
- Combine the strawberries, cukes, onions, and blue cheese crumbles in a large bowl.
- Sprinkle with tarragon, a pinch of salt and a few grinds of cracked pink peppercorns.
- Toss gently.
- Serve with the aged balsamic vinegar on the side.
- Drizzle the desired amount of balsamic vinegar on each plate of salad.
Support your local farmers & farm markets!