Spinach salad with raspberry vinaigrette

PJ Ballard is the Oakland Medical Center's Public Affairs expert who helped get our market publicized when it started. Her father was a professional chef. The cooking gene skipped a generation. PJ, who agreed to be quoted, has said "The only thing I can make are reservations." She prints my weekly recipes but has never made one. Only recently did she move beyond lettuce to a spinach salad at a local restaurant. This week's recipe is in honor of PJ Ballard in the hope that she will try it. PJ – this is really simple and good. I hope you try it.


  • Vinaigrette
  • 2 Tbsp raspberry vinegar
  • 1 tsp Dijon mustard
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1/4 tsp pepper
  • 2 tsp sugar
  • 6 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • 1/4 cup raspberries, mashed with a fork
  • Salad
  • 6 to 8 cups spinach leaves from Happy Boys Farms, San Juan Bautista
  • 1/2 cup walnut pieces or chopped hazelnuts, toasted (1/4 cup provides one day's worth of omega-3 fatty acid)
  • 1/2 cup raspberries from VB Farms, Watsonville
  • Crumbled goat cheese or blue cheese optional


Whisk the olive oil into the other blended ingredients. Toast the walnuts in a 350° oven for 10 to 15 minutes or until slightly browned and aromatic. Dress the salad. Toss with the nuts.


Preston Maring, MD