It’s June and on the West Coast that means two things: the unofficial start to summer and the official start to berry sesason; strawberries, raspberries, blueberries and later on blackberries. I just happen to live about 10 blocks south of one of the most prolific berry growing regions on the Lower Mainland in an area called “South Surrey” which is actually part of the City of Surrey and before I moved here I couldn’t understand why the distinction between the two. I do now and it’s because there is a very large swath of agricultural land between “Surrey” and those of us who live to the south of the “city”. It wasn’t something I took into consideration when we decided to buy a home here, but what absolute dumb luck that this is where I landed given my philosophy of eating local.
Strawberries are in season now and I picked these up from a local farm market, Mary’s Garden, that is about 5km from my front door. I love shopping there because it is family owned and operated and has been in business for decades. They really care about what they do which is grow food for those of us who can’t.
Berries are so versatile and nutritious and can play a major or supporting role in many dishes like dessert, a smoothie or a salad. And, not your usual spinach and berry salad either. When it comes to food I really encourage everyone to take your conventional ideas and recipes, throw them in a big bowl, give it a big shake and see what you get. For whatever reason so many of us get stuck in what we eat day after day and that’s when our diets start to suffer and in turn our health. So throw caution to the wind and eat your strawberries and blueberries with some cucumber and avocado.
Author: Cassie Elliott
Prep time: 10 minutes
Ingredients for Salad:
- 3 cups leafy greens (organic)
- 1/4 English cucumber
- 6 large strawberries
- 1/2 cup blueberries
- 2 slices red onion
- 1 cup cooked chicken
- 1/2 an avocado
- Wash greens and place in large salad bowl.
- Chop chicken into one inch cubes.
- Slice cucumbers, strawberries and red onion.
- Cut avocado in half, remove pit and skin, chop into bite size pieces.
- Throw everything into the salad bowl with the greens, drizzle dressing overtop, gently toss and taste. Add more dressing if needed. Remember: when it comes to adding dressing to a salad, less is more; taste then add.
- Plate and eat.
Ingredients for Poppyseed Dressing:
The base for this dressing uses my homemade mayo recipe (see below or find here) but omits the garlic and onion powder.
- Homemade mayo
- 2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
- 1 – 2 tablespoons honey (start with one, add more to taste)
- 2 teaspoons poppyseeds
- Place all ingredients in a jar and blend using immersion blender until combined.
- 2/3 cup avocado oil
- 1 large egg
- 1/2 teaspoon yellow mustard
- 1/2 teaspoon onion powder
- 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
- 1/2 teaspoon lemon juice (or to taste)
- pinch of salt
- Place all ingredients in a wide mouthed jar. Blend using immersion blender.