This refreshing strawberry arugula salad with hazelnuts and feta is a vibrant blend of nutty, fruity, and tangy flavors. The fresh strawberries offer a sweet and juicy taste that is balanced with the mildly peppery arugula greens. Crumbled feta cheese adds a creamy texture that contrasts with the hazelnuts. And its salinity complements the tart balsamic vinaigrette and sweet berries.
½ pound arugula
½ pound Tuscan kale
12 strawberries, sliced
12 very ripe strawberries, sliced
½ cup white balsamic vinegar
1 cup extra virgin olive oil
1 tablespoon shallot, minced
Salt and pepper to taste
2 cups sugar
2 cups water
1 cup hazelnuts
1 tablespoon cocoa
1 cup crumbled feta cheese
1 teaspoon parsley, chopped
1 teaspoon tarragon, chopped
1 teaspoon chives, diced
For the salad:
For the balsamic dressing:
For the cocoa-dusted hazelnuts:
For the herbed feta:
- Combine first four ingredients in a blender and starting at a lower speed, purée well.
- Turn the speed up and continue to blend until completely emulsified.
- Season with salt and pepper. (Note: I like to go heavy on the pepper.)
- Preheat oven to 300 degrees. Combine water and sugar in a small sauce pot and bring to a simmer. Add hazelnuts and simmer for two minutes.
- Strain nuts from simple syrup mixture and spread out on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Bake for 15 minutes, rotating every 5 minutes, then remove from oven and let cool slightly.
- Place in mixing bowl and season with a touch of salt and cocoa powder until evenly coated.
Combine all ingredients in a bowl and set aside in refrigerator until ready for use.
In a large mixing bowl, combine greens, sliced strawberries, and vinaigrette to taste (you’ll have some dressing left over). Season lightly with salt and pepper and top with hazelnuts and feta.
- Recipe from chef Joe DiMaio, Stars Rooftop & Grill Room, Charleston, South Carolina