The sweet, salty, tart, and peppery flavors in this Blackberry Feta Salad all work incredibly well together and it makes for a simple summer side dish or appetizer.
(This recipe for Blackberry Feta Salad was originally posted in August 2012, but was updated with new photos in 2018).
I'd have a reallyyyy hard time answering if you asked me my favorite berry. But I think I could probably narrow it down to blueberries and blackberries. I think. Really, I don't discriminate against any berries. That would just be rude and totally wrong. But there's something about the semi-sweet, semi-tart flavor of blueberries and blackberries that make me extra happy. You know, kind of like Sour Patch Kids, which are one of the best candies in the world. They make you pucker just a little bit, but they're still covered in little crystals of sugar. That's how I feel about blackberries and blueberries. Except, you know, the fruits are actually 100% real and healthy. And um, a salad with Sour Patch Kids on it might be just a little odd. Though, you know me, I'd totally try that. At least it would be pretty... If not a little creepy.
I've been eating feta cheese on my lunch salads pretty much every day recently and began to dream about feta with blackberries. Mainly because I thought they'd be pretty together. But also because I knew the flavor combination could be out of this world. And I was correct. Most cheeses and fruits are pretty delectable together and blackberries and feta are perfectly awesome.
BLACKBERRY FETA SALAD RECIPE
As with most salads, the portions you use are totally up to you, but I included my recommendations below. Toss in more blackberries if you want extra or use more feta for a bit more of a salty bite. You know what you like best! And after all, that's what salads are all about. This is pretty much one of the simplest recipes ever, but I figure it's Monday. And none of us can really handle too much right now. Or maybe it's just me who can't. Either way. We all need a little simplicity in our lives sometimes.
All you need to do is add the arugula, blackberries, and feta to a bowl
Then whip up the dressing. Simply mix together the lemon zest, lemon juice, olive oil, honey, salt, and pepper. This is a simple, but perfect salad dressing.
And drizzle the dressing over the salad and toss to combine. I like to add some more lemon zest on top, too.
I know. I told you this was a tough one. So much laborious time spent in the kitchen. Le sigh; it's tough trying to get dinner on the table in the summer.
But seriously, this is a great salad to serve when entertaining, especially in these last days of summer. It takes about 5 minutes to make, it's unique, and will look stunning on the table. Plus, it will likely launch a conversation among your guests about how fabulous fruit and cheese is together. More specifically, blackberries and feta.
So, was the blackberry feta salad everything I had imagined it would be when I was dreaming the recipe up? Yup. In my opinion, everything went so well together and the flavors worked together perfectly.
I can only really describe them as a flavor explosion because that's what they felt like. The arugula is sharp and peppery, the feta is creamy and salty, the blackberries are sweet and tart and the lemon honey dressing sour and sweet. Aside from throwing some meat in this here salad, what other flavor profile could there be? I'm pretty sure I caught them all.
It really does look like a sweet, innocent salad. But it packs a ridiculous punch.
The perfect summer side dish as we get ready to wave goodbye to summer for another year. Which I'm totally resisting, by the way. I'm still on a pumpkin boycott (can't we all just wait until September at least??) and am seriously holding on to summer with every last fiber of my being. I'm OBSESSED with fall and actually love me a good old fashioned Boston winter (snow makes me giddy), but oh how I'll miss summer dresses and open-toed shoes. Not to mention, I'm kind of dreading my walk to and from the T once the chilly air hits. If anyone has any advice on the best winter coat ever, let me know. I need to be warm, but still fashionable obvi. Also, I fear being too warm and passing out once I get on the T. Ah, city life.
Enough talk of winter for now. Go make this blackberry feta salad, enjoy it, and savor the summer sun a little bit longer.
How are you celebrating this unofficial last week of summer?
Blackberry Feta Salad
- 4 cups arugula
- 1 cup fresh blackberries
- ½ cup crumbled feta cheese
- 2 tsp fresh lemon zest, plus more for topping salad
- ¼ cup fresh lemon juice (from about 2 lemons)
- 2 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil
- 2 Tbsp honey
- ⅛ tsp salt
- ⅛ tsp pepper
- Toss arugula, blackberries, and feta cheese in a large bowl.
- In a separate small bowl, whisk together lemon zest, lemon juice, olive oil, honey, salt, and pepper.
- Drizzle half the dressing over the salad and toss. Serve on individual plates or bowls and top with lemon zest and more dressing if desired.