Juicy Red Salad, Buttermilk Dressing; and, May I Rant?


Without Avo

Without Avo

Here’s a fresh and beautiful springtime salad inspired by the early Brooks Cherry appearance in our farmer’s markets this week.  It’s crunchy, creamy & juicy, and sweet, tart & peppery, all in one bite.

The sweet and juicy fruit pairs well with the crunch and grassyness of the black eyed pea and english pea sprouts; and the avo and creamy dressing, tangled with the shock of peppery arugula, rounds everything out in balance.

That's Better

That’s Better

This Friday at my favorite farmer’s market, I was so excited about these cherries, harbinger of summer, that I literally just threw together a salad idea in my head, made a few more purchases with the cash I had left, and biked all the ingredients to work in my backpack.  I figured I could snap some pretty good photographs in our office kitchen, which encompasses one quarter of one entire building floor, and has 2 floor-to-ceiling windows as its 2 out of 3 walls.  Great light, juicy cherries, some sprouts, my iphone camera, and all of a sudden I have a chance at making it to Fiesta Friday after all!

I artfully assembled my salad, moved it around to scout lighting, and then it happened.  That person, you know the one . . . the one that every office has who is miserable . . . she snarked me!  She rained on my sunny disposition.  Really staring deeply into my salad (and getting into my personal space) I believe what she said was, “That looks so disgustingly healthy,” with a tinge of sincere scorn and mockery. Plus maneuvering around me with a step-ladder and crowding me big time.  I mean, can you give a girl a little happy privacy . . . or wait 2 minutes until the space is free?  I know I’m a little weird with my food but . . . can’t we all just get along? 🙂


On that note, I would like to wish all of my fellow “food obsessed” or “food interested” bloggers and Fiesta Friday #13 co-guests a very happy weekend filled with lots of good food, companionship, gratitude and love!!!!!!!

Here’s the Salad Recipe:

*Please note that the dressing recipe is adapted from Ina Garten’s recipe published on the foodnetwork.com, and it will make much more dressing than you need for this salad, but it is a WONDERFUL salad dressing to have on hand.  I use Thai basil instead of regular basil because I like it better! I keep a jar in my refrigerator at work and at home.


3 cups wild arugula

1 cup mixed sprouts (I used black eyed pea and english pea found at my farmer’s market, but please feel free to use bean sprouts, radish sprouts, whatever you can)

1/2 cup fresh cherries, pitted

1/2 cup strawberries, halved

1/2 avocado, sliced

Arrange all ingredients in a nice big bowl.  Sprinkle with salt and let sit while you make the dressing.

Ingredients for the Dressing:

1/4 cup buttermilk

1/4 cup mayonnaise

1/4 cup yoghurt, drained for half an hour

1/4 cup olive oil

2 scallions

1/2 bunch Thai basil

1 Tbsp mustard

1 clove garlic, smashed

1 Tbps lemon juice

1 tsp honey

pinch salt

Place the scallions, basil, lemon juice, mustard, olive oil, garlic, salt, and pepper in the bowl of a food processor fitted with the steel blade. Puree for 15 to 20 seconds to make a smooth mixture. Add the mayonnaise, yogurt, and buttermilk and blend until smooth. Transfer the dressing to a container, cover, and refrigerate for 1 hour for the flavors to develop.

For one gigantic salad as listed above, I use about 1/4 to 1/3 cup dressing and mix really well with my hands, then eat with a spoon!  Don’t forget to top with freshly cracked black pepper.

Read more at: http://www.foodnetwork.com/recipes/ina-garten/buttermilk-ranch-dressing-with-bibb-lettuce-recipe.html?oc=linkback


47 Comments on “Juicy Red Salad, Buttermilk Dressing; and, May I Rant?

  1. Clearly that lady doesn’t know what good food is and probably has toxins galore in her veins to say such a thing about this beautiful salad! I’m getting excited for cherries now. Happy Friday!

  2. Awww,…yes, the ones who rain on your glorious independence day parades. This looks lovely and I’m so looking forward to trying out the sauce. Yum. And colourful.

  3. And I want to say that salad looks deliciously healthy… Deliciously beautiful… That is my kind of salad!! I’m sorry that the nay-sayer rained on your parade… They always do!
    When they do… I say go dance in the rain..and jump in the puddles!
    It’s a wonderful salad to bring to Fiesta Friday! And you’re not kidding.. That light was perfect.. Your photos are fabulous!! Thanks so much for sharing!! ❤

  4. These Juicy Red Salad and Buttermilk Dressing presentations are beautiful…totally filled with color and a delightful visual arrangement…extremely pleasing to the eye and the entire psyche! I would like to eat one of these flavorful bowls for dinner. Great work here Birgerbird!!!

  5. Lovely salad! So colorful. I can identify with your story, too… Focus on the happiness the health and enjoyment the salad brings and leave the negativity behind. After all, happiness comes from within! Sending some your way 🙂

  6. The salad is beautiful, and I bet it was really tasty too. Ignore that nay-sayer, more beautiful colourful salad for the rest of us! 😀

  7. What a beautiful, fresh, spring salad. Lovely! I love anything with arugula! Your buttermilk dressing sounds wonderful too.

  8. Your salad looks fabulous and your work colleagues comment sounds wholly unnecessary, sounds to me like someone who eats rubbish and knows they should be healthier!!!

  9. I really dislike when people look into my plate right when I’m excited or about to eat it. It gets me crabby to be around people who clearly don’t appreciate good food. This looks healthy and delicious and absolutely the kind of salad I want as an indulgence AND a staple! Thanks for sharing it at FF – you know that all of us here definitely appreciate it!

  10. Well, you have to feel badly for the toxic co-worker! But, I love the look of your salad – beautiful light and all! The colours and textures are absolutely inspiring!! 😀

  11. Ugh, what a horrible lady! I was harassed and bullied by a colleague of mine for four years. She finally left this year and it has been AMAZING. It got to the point where our district office had to intervene and ban her from contacting me in any way, shape, or form. It was awful and I would cry nearly every day. I’m so thankful that chapter of my life is done and over with–phew! Anyhow, your salad looks lovely, Sue. And floor to ceiling windows?? Can I come take food pictures with you, please???

    • Oh my goodness Patty, do you think she just didn’t like you because you are cute? I had a work colleague who was stylish, pretty, talented and on and on and it was amazing the dislike that was generated I think because others just were jealous! She’s gone, sadly.

      • I think she was an unhappy person and lashed out for a number of reasons. Luckily I have a great support network at work and my other colleagues helped me through it. It was a complete and utter nightmare. I still shudder when I think about it.

  12. Your healthy salad is gorgeous but I laugh when I see so many foodies provide so many images. One is enough to make me drool and any more than that make me want to click away. As for this office mate of yours it’s sad that the poor thing doesn’t know what real food and good food are. Or maybe she does but simply has some sort of personality disorder that prompts her to envy others and attack them.

    I haven’t worked in a shared space since 1985 and I don’t miss it. I’m no wimp by a long shot. I am an eldest child in a large dysfunctional family and I raised the young ones. I can deliver a cutting response to every nasty barb shot at me and did so when I was a young thing but I chose not to years ago. I made that conversion to become a peaceful warrior ie. a non-combative person in midlife. However, my closest friends tell me they can still sense what I’m capable of when words like fracking and pipeline enter conversations … dang! Working alone and eating lunch on my deck in silence while enjoying the beauty of the forest is great!

    Don’t let the fool get you down. Thanks her so much for her constructive input in a flat, soft voice that doesn’t reek of sarcasm and move on. 😉

  13. Dear TT is is so nice to hear from you, truly. I value not only your techie knowledge and advice, but your honesty and wisdom. Also glad you have emerged from the snow-imposed quietude and trauma (it sounded traumatic)

  14. Oh, I do know the person to whom you refer; every office has one. This looks like a great use of the cash you had on hand at the market (don’t you hate it when you see one more thing you want and are scraping for coins at the cash only stand?). Nice post, rant on…

  15. It looks sooooo beautiful and delicious! I’m eating salads almost every day and always trying to add some new ingredients; and I love yours, except the mayo in the dressing. How do you think-can I use frozen cherries?

    • Use canned sour cherries or you could try frozen i suppose. And I encourage you to ditch the mayo for yogurt or just some olive oil– I am very improvisational in my cooking. Now excuse me while I ogle over your cherry pie!!!!!!!

      • 😀 I’ve never try cherries in savoury salads, but I love them and how looks your salad; but here fresh cherries are very expensive now- around 30$ per kg or even for a small pack!

      • I just had a crostini last night at a restaurant, with burrata, cherry and balsamic. Oh my oh my! That is amazing the price of cherries, you might as well buy an airline ticket and just eat cherries over here for a month!

  16. This looks soooo good… I loveeee salads so I’ll definitely be making this… Salad dressing and all! You are a great storyteller too… Love your blog! 🙂

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: