One of my favorite pizza places serves a similar salad to this one, and I’ve always really loved it. So, I decided to recreate using some pantry and fridge staples, nothing super fancy required. I threw this together in just a few minutes and absolutely devoured it! This has a wonderful collection of flavors and textures!
Baby spinach, torn or chopped into smaller pieces.
I find that with salads with lots of toppings I must have smaller lettuce so that I can fit both the greenery and the toppings on each fork full. If you want to double-fist it, spinach-toppings, spinach-toppings, etc. then don’t tear up your lettuce.
For every two people you are feeding, add:
3 whole artichoke hearts, cut into quarters and then into thin slices
1 section red bell pepper, diced
1-2 green onions, white and light green parts, minced
1/4 cup garbanzo beans
5-8 thin slices of hard sausage–I used beef summer sausage, but you could also use salami or whatever you prefer–slice each round in to matchsticks
2 tablespoons shredded or fresh grated Parmesan cheese
A few twists of black pepper
Top with balsamic salad dressing, which you could probably make from scratch, but I absolutely buy it instead.
You can make this on individual plates, layering the ingredients as you go, or just toss it all together in a big bowl. Enough of this salad could easily be your whole meal, especially if you added extra garbanzo beans and sausage; or, you could use it as a side to some grilled chicken/steak, or a pasta dish. Or both, if you are Starvin’ Marvin.
I had this excellent epicurean dream to top this with a creamy blue cheese dressing…but, um, mine was expired. Not a little bit expired, but, like, 18+ months expired. With fuzzy mold. At this point in the evening I was starving and didn’t want to run to the grocery store for salad dressing because I knew I’d come home with a half-pound of Mozzarella sticks and the three-for-one discount priced donuts. So, I used a balsamic dressing instead and it was delicious. It wasn’t creamy, but I ended up eating salad for dinner instead of Mozzarella sticks and donuts, so overall I think it was okay.