Rainbow Chopped Salad

My 30th birthday weekend has officially come to a close. It’s no longer acceptable to go out to dinner every night and eat cake several times a day (sigh…). A sincere thank you to everyone who wished me a happy birthday and helped celebrate with me.

My friend Mer, my BFF from high school, was one of those people. She was kind enough to make the 2.5 hour drive into Chicago to spend some time with me. Plus, she made me this cake.

Pretty awesome, huh? Chocolate cake with Nutella mousse, Frangellico, and chocolate ganache. Luckily I took a picture of it before this happened…

Lesson learned — DON’T attempt to move a cake after you’ve had a few drinks. I dropped it. On the floor. Ugh. Breaks your heart, doesn’t it? I hate to see a good cake go to waste, so I attempted to salvage it. Five second rule, right? Maybe? Er…anyway…

Before the Great Cake Catastrophe of 2011, we made this salad for dinner.

And dang, was it good. I happen to love salad, but I’m pretty sure this recipe could make any salad hater sing its praises. Not only does it look beautiful, but the combination of sweet fruits, bitter radicchio, crunchy hazelnuts, creamy gorgonzola and tangy dressing makes this salad interesting and delicious.

Rainbow Chopped Salad (serves 4 main course portions)

Adapted from Bon Appetit

What you need:


  • 1/4 cup red wine vinegar
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons finely chopped shallot
  • 1/2 tablespoon honey
  • 1 tablespoon dijon mustard
  • 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil


  • 3 romaine hearts, chopped
  • 1 head of radicchio, quartered and sliced
  • 1 large Fuji apple, halved, cored, diced
  • 1 Asian pear, halved, cored, diced
  • 1 mango, peeled, diced
  • 3/4 cup hazelnuts, toasted
  • 1/2 cup dried cranberries
  • 1/2 cup crumbled gorgonzola

How you do it:


  • Whisk vinegar, shallot,  honey and mustard in small bowl to blend. Gradually whisk in oil. Season dressing to taste with salt and freshly ground black pepper.


  • Combine romaine and next 7 ingredients in very large bowl; toss to blend. Add dressing (I didn’t use all of it) and toss to coat. Serve topped with freshly ground black pepper and a side of crusty bread.

23 thoughts on “Rainbow Chopped Salad

  1. Beautiful and colorful salad. The dressing sounds genius, too. It’s a great idea to eat salad after a number of heavy feast 🙂

  2. That salad was really good – I can attest. And, it paired nicely with the cake (hazelnuts/nutella…).

    If only there were video of the tremendous and hilarious SPLAT!

  3. I hope you know the 5 second rule, well there is NO rule to scrapping chocolate cake off the floor and eating it, even better just sit right down on the floor with fork in hand and dig in!!!!
    Cannot wait to make the salad, oh, soooo divine! Maggie

  4. It’s so good when you can make your birthday last throughout an entire weekend 🙂 and use that as an excuse to eat everything and anything! :))

    The salad looks great! I’m sorry about the cake, but it looks good on the picture. 🙂

  5. Thats so sweet that your friend brought the cake all the way! And I would probably eat it in spite of the little “spill”! haha

    Happy birthday, belated!! The salad definitely cancels out the cake calories 😉

  6. That cake looks amazing. I bet it was delicious even after being dropped! 😉 The salad looks great too…I love the addition of the apple and hazelnuts!

  7. The salad looks wonderful! And I turned 30 last year … and yes, I still eat cake several times a day!!! (Actually I ate cake for breakfast yesterday, I wasn’t feeling well, so I told myself that it was ok). Turning 30 is being confident enough to do whatever you want (as long as it doesn’t hurt anyone)! Happy Birthday!

  8. I love everything that you put into this salad, but never would have thought to combine it! Fantastic salad idea. I can’t wait to try it.

  9. One can never have too many salad recipes to choose from! I’ve printed this one and will keep it close at hand.

    Happy Birthday to you!! I think I would have eaten some of the cake anyway! For such a special occasion, yes, the 5 sec rule is definitely in order.

  10. Gorgeous salad. I turned 30 three weeks back – its not the end of the world, and one can still eat cake (you) or get drunk (me) whatever the age

  11. Pingback: Rainbow Chopped Salad | Fit Ripped and Healthy

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