We had some gorgeous weather here in Texas over the weekend…sunny, warm and clear…the perfect weather to work in the yard, hang out on the porch with a refreshing beverage and grill some great food. The Cowboy was gone to the ranch on Saturday to shred but to my delight he came home that afternoon with some beautiful, thick cut New York Strips from our favorite meat market, Dzuiks…so steak it was!
The Cowboy has spent years perfecting his steaks and let me tell you…I will not eat steak at restaurants. What is the point when I can get a steak at home that is better than any steak I’ve ever had out. More about the steak here, cause’ this post isn’t about the steak…it’s about the side.
I know. Baked potato, right?
This grill session called for something refreshing…a salad…but not just any boring salad…something light and cool…then it hit me. Mom #2 used to make this salad for special occasions when I was a kid. It didn’t really have a name, we just called it “that marinated salad”, but if we went to a potluck, my aunts house for an Easter BBQ, to the lake camping, or anywhere that called for something special, Marinated Artichoke Salad made the trip. I remember it was reserved for only special occasions because the ingredients were on the pricey side…artichoke hearts, hearts of palm, avocados…well these steaks were definitely a special occasion.
Now that I am thinking about it, Marinated Artichoke Salad was a staple during our Easter celebrations and was a welcome change from the typical potato salad or gloppy macaroni salad that would normally be served with ham or BBQ. It is great option for Spring and Summer outdoor functions because there is no mayo, so this salad can sit out on a buffet table with no problems. Here in Texas outdoor get together can end upon on the sweltering hot side…so if its going to sit outside,mayo is a no no. You can also make it ahead of time…the longer it sits the better. It takes under 30 minutes to through together and it’s beautiful, cool and refreshing!
The mixture of textures is what makes Marinated Artichoke Salad so special. The creaminess of the avocado, the juicy tomatoes, crunchy, cool cucumbers, firm artichoke hearts and delicate hearts of palm in a tangy, herb-y, garlicky dressing makes for a crazy good combination. If you like onion, you could also add some thinly sliced purple onion to the mix, but why mess with yummy perfection.
Both of my girls loved it, especially the hearts of palm, which they have never tried and asked a ton of questions about. I love that they are so curious (and critical) of food…they often play “Chopped” at the dinner table which can get pretty brutal!
I love this salad even better the next day after all the flavors have time to mingle. If refrigerated with the dressing, the olive oil may solidify. Just remove it from the fridge about 30 minutes before enjoying. I recommend that you make the dressing ahead of time so it has time to get yummy! Again, if the olive oil turns solid in the fridge, just take it out about 30 minutes before tossing it with the salad.
Do your guests a favor…serve up a big bowl of Marinated Artichoke Salad at your next potluck, Easter BBQ or Fourth of July cookout. I promise you won’t miss the potato salad!
Marinated Artichoke Salad
Marinated Artichoke Salad is crazy good combination of avocado, tomatoes, cucumbers, artichoke hearts and hearts of palm in a tangy, garlic dressing.
- 1/2 cup olive oil
- 2 tablespoons vinegar
- 2 tablespoons lemon juice
- 1 teaspoon honey or sugar
- 1/2 teaspoon dry mustard
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 1/4 teaspoon seasoned salt
- 1/4 dried Italian seasoning
- 1/8 teaspoon pepper
- 2-3 cloves garlic, finely minced
- 2 large avocados, peeled & diced
- Lemon juice
- 1 14oz can hearts of palm, drained & sliced
- 1 14oz can artichoke hearts, drained & coarsely chopped
- 1 pint grape tomatoes, rinsed & halved
- 2 english cucumbers, quartered & diced
- Step 1 Combine first 10 ingredients in a jar. Cover tightly with lid and shake like crazy. Set aside or in fridge to chill till needed. The cool fridge may cause the olive oil to turn solid. If you want to make the dressing ahead, just remove it from the fridge about an hour before serving to come to room temperature.
- Step 2 Sprinkle avocado with lemon juice and toss gently to coat.
- Step 3 Combine avocado with the next 4 ingredients. Toss gently. Refrigerate until serving time. When ready to serve toss salad gently with the dressing.
- Step 4 I love this salad even better the next day after all the flavors have time to mingle. If refrigerated with the dressing, the olive oil may solidify. Just remove it from the fridge about 30 minutes before enjoying.