This salad will change your life. I'm not even kidding. It's the recipe everyone I know asks for. It's the dish everyone raves about. It's perfect for a dinner date or a dinner party or a dinner alone.
The dressing is a slightly modified version of Gwyenth Paltrow's Standby Vinaigrette from her cookbook, My Father's Daughter. It's excellent and versatile and perfect for so many things. Which is probably why she named it her Standby Vinaigrette. Just a guess. —Shea
In a large skillet, heat 1 tbsp olive oil over medium heat. Add onions and sauté until softened, 3-5 minutes. Add garlic, mushrooms, red wine and salt and pepper and continue to cook for another 3-4 minutes. Remove from heat and set aside.
Mix the dressing by whisking together the mustard, maple syrup, and red wine vinegar. Slowly whisk in the oil and mix thoroughly.
In a large bowl, add the spinach, mushroom and onion mixture and parmesan cheese. Drizzle the salad dressing (start with about half and add more to meet your liking) and toss to combine. Save the extra dressing for later. Eat that salad. Lick the plate. Drink some wine. Bask in the glory of it all.