Easter Rainbow Salad

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Vibrant beets, radishes, and strawberries give this salad its beautiful striped appearance. Top with a slightly sweet vinaigrette and crunchy, salty pistachios.

Easter Rainbow Salad
Photo: Andy Lyons
Total Time:
30 mins
Servings:
8
Yield:
8 cups

Arrange stripes of golden beets, pink-and-white watermelon radishes, and strawberries on a bed of Bibb lettuce to look like a giant Easter egg. It makes a gorgeous and delicious dish for your Easter menu when assembled that way, but you can also simply toss everything together for a side-dish salad for any meal. A slightly sweet vinaigrette studded with pistachios and dill brings these contrasting flavors together.

This dish is all about the produce, so make sure you're starting with the best-quality ingredients. When shopping for beets, look for firm and smooth-skinned beets. If the greens are still attached, you want them to be brightly colored and crisp. If you prefer your beets on the milder, sweeter side, look for smaller beets. You could substitute the more common red beets in this recipe, but they will have an earthier flavor. Watermelon radishes are another visual star of this salad. They are larger and sweeter than an ordinary radish, so keep that in mind if you're making substitutions.

Ingredients

  • cup white balsamic vinegar or balsamic vinegar

  • 2 tablespoon honey

  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice

  • ½ teaspoon kosher salt

  • cup olive oil

  • 3 tablespoon finely chopped pistachios, plus more for topping

  • 3 tablespoon finely chopped green onions

  • 3 tablespoon finely chopped fresh dill

  • 1 head Bibb lettuce or Boston lettuce, leaves separated

  • 2 golden beets, roasted, halved, and thinly sliced

  • 8 ounce whole fresh strawberries, hulled and sliced (about 2 cups)

  • 2 watermelon radishes, peeled and thinly sliced

  • 2 ounce ricotta salata, finely shredded (substitute feta cheese, if desired)

Directions

  1. For vinaigrette: In a small bowl whisk together vinegar, honey, lemon juice, and 1/2 tsp. salt. Gradually whisk in olive oil.

    Test Kitchen Tip: Using white balsamic vinegar allows the colors in this salad to shine brightest, but if regular balsamic vinegar is what you have on hand, you can use that for similar flavor. The color will be browner, but it will still taste delicious.

  2. Stir in pistachios, green onions, and dill; set aside.

  3. For salad: Arrange lettuce leaves on a large platter. Top with rows of roasted beets, strawberries, and radishes.

  4. Sprinkle with cheese and additional pistachios. Serve with dressing on the side.

To Roast Beets: Preheat oven to 375°F. Place beets on a piece of heavy foil. Bring up sides of foil around beets; fold ends to enclose. Place on a baking sheet. Bake for 1 hour or until tender. Cool. Slip off skins and continue to prep as called for in the ingredient list.

Frequently Asked Questions

  • What is white balsamic vinegar?

    Like regular balsamic vinegar, white balsamic vinegar comes from Modena, Italy and is made from the same white Trebbiano grapes, but is processed quite differently. White balsamic vinegar is pressure-cooked and aged for a much shorter time in uncharred barrels to avoid the dark color of regular balsamic vinegar. You can find white balsamic vinegar in many well-stocked grocery stores, specialty stores, and online.

  • What is ricotta salata?

    Don't let the name fool you, ricotta salata is quite different from ricotta. "Salata" means salty and indicates the process used to make the cheese. Ricotta salata starts as ricotta, but is salted and pressed then aged for about three months to create the firm crumbly cheese. It's similar in flavor to feta, but less salty. It's sweeter and nutty when the aging process is complete.

Nutrition Facts (per serving)

262 Calories
21g Fat
18g Carbs
3g Protein
Nutrition Facts
Servings Per Recipe 8
Calories 262
% Daily Value *
Total Fat 21g 27%
Saturated Fat 4g 20%
Cholesterol 6mg 2%
Sodium 229mg 10%
Total Carbohydrate 18g 7%
Total Sugars 14g
Protein 3g
Vitamin C 30.1mg 151%
Calcium 41mg 3%
Iron 0.9mg 5%
Potassium 283mg 6%
Folate, total 61.4mcg
Vitamin B-6 0.1mg

*The % Daily Value (DV) tells you how much a nutrient in a food serving contributes to a daily diet. 2,000 calories a day is used for general nutrition advice.

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