Persian Spring Salad

Every year on Mother’s Day my family has a tradition of heading to Cedar Circle Farm in Vermont to select annual herbs and flowers for our garden, and hanging baskets for our front porch. I’m not sure when the tradition began, but it’s a tradition I love because we do it together. It marks the beginning of time outside in warm weather after a long New England winter, and the flowers bring color into a world that is primarily, at the moment,  filled with muddy brown and a bit of green. Fresh plants and color― they’re symbols of new life and hope―much like how my husband and I see our children. This year is feeling especially filled with hope because both our son and daughter are thriving in new ways. Clark, our son, is at university in Montreal, studying successfully after having taken some time off to take care of his health. Immersed in literature while thinking ahead to the future of a career in public health, he’s never been stronger nor happier. Our daughter, Isabel, is preparing to finish middle school while tending to two charming toddlers twice a week, and running like-the-wind in spring track. She is coming into her own, and it’s lovely to see. In years past I’ve had trouble with the focus of Mother’s Day being on me but this year I embrace it. My family is happy, so I can be happy, too.

I found this recipe for a Persian Spring Salad in A Change of Appetite by Diana Henry. I was drawn to it by its beauty. Filled with delicate spring herbs and greens, and topped with edible flowers, it’s an uncanny feast for the eyes. This salad is perfect for spring because it incorporates leaves from freshly planted seedlings, and brings the fragrance and hope of the garden indoors. It’s delicious for a light lunch with a bit of bread and cheese; it will also fit well into any dinner menu. I plan to request it for part of my Mother’s Day dinner ahead.

Have a great holiday.

I look forward to seeing you in my kitchen, gathering flavors, soon.


Persian Spring Salad

Yield: Six Servings


  • 3 cups spring greens (spinach, watercress, baby romaine, radicchio), rinsed and dried
  • 4 radishes, rinsed, trimmed & thinly sliced
  • ½ small cucumber, rinsed, trimmed & thinly sliced
  • Handful each: dill leaves, mint leaves, scallions & Italian parsley, lightly chopped as needed
  • 1 cup radish sprouts
  • Edible flowers
  • ½ cup extra virgin olive oil
  • Juice of one lemon
  • Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper


  1. Mound the spring greens on a large serving platter. Top with radishes, cucumbers, herbs, sprouts and flowers. Drizzle with olive oil and lemon juice. Sprinkle with sea salt and black pepper. Toss together gently.
  2. Serve and enjoy.


This recipe was inspired by Diana Henry’s Change of Appetite.

Dena Testa Bray has been writing Gathering Flavors, a culinary blog, since 2011. She is a trained chef & ran a home based cooking school. Dena now designs websites, focusing on work with creative people. You can see her website work at She lives in New Hampshire with her husband and family.