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Tuesday, April 17, 2012

chopped


I'm not a big salad eater.  Never really have been.  They always have tomatoes (which are disgusting, no matter how times I look at how pretty they are and think they are going to taste good) and big hunks of overly crispy, watery iceberg lettuce.  It just doesn't do it for me.  As I was making a mental menu plan for our Easter dinner, my mom reminded me that I do like salad...just with fresh greens and not a tomato in sight.  

We have a tradition in our family to have pear salad on big occasions.  (Milestone birthdays, baptisms, receiving endowments, missions, Tuesdays...)  We first had it at the Nordstrom Cafe and my mom recreated it for us.  It originally called for champagne vinaigrette, which I a) did not have and b) totally forgot to look for in my one day only crazy day of post-sick pre-party shopping last week.  Thus, when Sunday evening came around, we had to make do with whatever was around.

Y'all, I didn't have any dressing in the house.  (Serious issues with salad on my part..)  So what did I do?  I made my own.  And ya know what? I am never buying dressing again!  I seriously felt like a Chopped Champion, scouring my cupboards and fridge and making something epically good.  In fact it was so good, I made a big thing of it the next day to take to the beach and ate the whole salad save a few bites Mr. F managed to steal.  I'm thinking mixed greens and raspberry vinaigrette are going to be a staple for us this summer. 


Pear Salad with Raspberry Vinaigrette
makes approximately 4 servings 

salad:
2 handfulls of mixed greens (I like to be as precise as possible)
1/8-1/4 c. toasted and chopped walnuts
1/8 c. dried cranberries
1 pear, cut into thin wedges
3 tbsp. crumbled goat cheese*

vinaigrette:
2 tsp. raspberry jam
2 tsp. balsamic vinegar
2 tsp. olive oil  

In a large bowl, add mixed greens, walnuts, cranberries, pear, and cheese.  In separate bowl, whisk together jam, vinegar, and oil. Add oil last and use as a thinner.  Mixture should coat a teaspoon.  Drizzle vinaigrette over salad mixture and lightly toss.

* you could also use blue cheese or feta, I just prefer the creamy relief of the goat cheese.

as a side note, I operate pretty solidly on a measuring system of what my Mor Mor calls, "By Guess and By Gosh."  proportions may need to be eyeballed to your liking.

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