Tuesday, September 5, 2017

Olivelle and Point Reyes Farmstead Cheese Giveaway...Featuring Sunshine Salad with Strawberry-Lemon Vinaigrette #salad #giveaway

Fall may be on the horizon, but I'm still making refreshing main dish salads in my kitchen! Here in Texas, it still quite warm...so I'm always looking for flavorful new salad combinations. Today, I'm partnering with Olivelle and Point Reyes Farmstead Cheese to create my flavorful Sunshine Salad with Strawberry-Lemon Vinaigrette. It's bursting with fun flavors and textures -- including a zingy homemade vinaigrette that features Olivelle's sweetly tart Strawberry Barrel Aged White Balsamic and Sicilian Lemon Olive Oil. Olivelle is based in Boseman, Montana and offers a wide range of flavored balsamic vinegars, oils, and infused olive oils. The flavor of these two products is so fresh and authentic! The sunny lemon-infused olive oil and barrel aged strawberry white balsamic is a natural pairing for my homemade vinaigrette.

My salad also features crumbled Point Reyes Farmstead Original Blue cheese. Made in Point Reyes, California, this blue cheese is produced on their family farm since 2000. This creamy, mild blue cheese is made from raw cows' milk and microbial (i.e., vegetarian rennet), then aged for 3 1/2 months. I'm not typically a blue cheese fan, but fell in love with this delicious cheese when we sampled it when visiting San Francisco last Fall. It's ultra creamy and has just enough blue cheese flavor to be yummy -- without being overwhelming. It paired perfectly with the strawberries, blueberries, and salty proscuitto in my salad. It complemented these flavors without pushing them into the background. Add some creamy avocado and some sliced almonds for crunch, and my Sunshine Salad with Strawberry-Lemon Vinaigrette is a real winner!

Sunshine Salad with 
Strawberry-Lemon Vinaigrette
a Weekend Gourmet Original
Ingredients (makes 2-3 servings):
  • 6 cups Spring Mix salad greens
  • 2/3 cup chopped strawberries
  • 1/2 cup blueberries
  • 2/3 cup crumbed Point Reyes Farmstead Original Blue Cheese
  • 1/2 cup salted sliced almonds
  • 2/3 cup chopped proscuitto
  • 1/2 large avocado, chopped into bite-sized pieces
For the vinaigrette:
  • 3/4 cup quartered strawberries
  • 1/4 cup Olivelle Strawberry Barrel Aged White Balsamic
  • 1/3 cup Olivelle Sicilian Lemon Olive Oil
  • Zest of one lemon
  • Juice of 1/2 lemon
  • 1 tbs. agave or honey
  • 1 tbs. finely chopped parsley
  • 1 clove garlic, finely chopped
  • Salt & pepper to taste
Step 1: Make the vinaigrette. Add the strawberries, Olivelle strawberry white balsamic and Sicilian lemon olive oil, lemon zest and juice, agave/honey, parsley, and garlic to a blender. Blend until all ingredients are completely chopped and the vinaigrette is emulsified. 
Step 2: Add salt and pepper to taste and pour the vinaigrette into a small glass jar. Reserve in the fridge to chill until you're ready to assemble the salad -- if covered with plastic wrap, the vinaigrette can be made up to 24 hours ahead.
Step 3: When you're ready to assemble the salad, toss the salad greens in 2 tbs. of the chilled strawberry-lemon vinagrette. Place the dressed greens on a pretty serving platter. Top the salad greens evenly with the strawberries, blueberries, Point Reyes Farmstead Original Blue Cheese crumbles, almonds, proscuitto, and avocado. Serve immediately with additional strawberry-lemon vinaigrette and cheese straws on the side.
This salad is definitely sunshine on a plate! Creamy avocado, crunchy almonds, juicy berries, salty-smoky proscuitto, and the tang of the creamy Point Reyes Farmstead blue cheese combine with the sweetly tart vinaigrette to make one fabulous salad. This salad was hearty enough to be a light dinner for me, but it would also make a perfect side salad for grilled shrimp served on a bed of rice. 

Want to create my Sunshine Salad with Strawberry-Lemon Vinaigrette in your kitchen? I can make that happen for one lucky reader! I'm teaming with my friends at Olivelle and Point Reyes Farmstead Cheese for a giveaway featuring the Strawberry Barrel Aged White Balsamic, Sicilian Lemon Olive Oil, and Original Blue Cheese used to create my salad! Olivelle is providing a pairing of their delicious strawberry white balsamic and lemon olive oil. Point Reyes Farmstead is providing a Farm Fresh Gift Set, which includes Original Blue, Bay Blue (mild blue flavor and a sweet salted caramel finish), and Toma (semihard with a buttery flavor) cheeses -- along with maple-pepper nuts and a cheese knife. 
To enter, simply follow the instructions in the Rafflecopter below. I'll accept entries until 1159 PM CST on Saturday, September 9th. The winner will be notified via e-mail and will have 48 hours to respond. If the winner does not respond within this time frame, a new winner will be selected. Winner must reside in the continental United States. Good luck!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Disclosure: Olivelle provided me a sampler of their infused olive oils and balsamic vinegar, and Point Reyes Farmstead provided me a sampling of their cheeses, to facilitate recipe development for this feature.

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