Tuesday, September 23, 2014

fall harvest salad with maple vinaigrette and honey-glazed pecans

The time is here.  It's Fall, ya'll, and I love it, love it, love it!  This season is rejuvenating, exhilarating, and worth celebrating with all things food.

Before I get to the fantastic salad I threw together to honor the ushering in of this grand (and my favorite) season, I need to apologize for being absent for a while.  Quite honestly, I've been cooking up a storm and even taking pictures of the finished results, but I've also been brainstorming about how to update the site and make it easier to navigate - doing a remodel, if you will - and through my research have found that it's going to take quite a bit of work and time.  Foolishly, I'd hoped I could do it quickly and come back with all of these new recipes and a new look, but I haven't figured out a way to do so, so I'll continue as usual for now.  The food's the best part anyway, right?

This past weekend was a busy one.  Between my husband and two boys, there were four football games, a 9-2 Saturday event I worked for school, church services and loads of laundry.  I did get our front porch semi-decorated for the season, just so I'd have a little "happy" to enjoy each time we pull into the drive, and our back patio also received the last of the mum and pansy planting.  I was so hoping I could finish a wreath I'm working on for the front door, along with the ottoman I decided to start recovering (20 days ago, but who's counting?!?), but as Scarlett said in her sweetest southern way, "Tomorrow is anotha' day…"

And so I did manage to get this salad put on a plate as a part of our Sunday lunch and fell in love.  In love, I tell ya.  Honey-glazed pecans, cranberries, goat cheese and a homemade maple vinaigrette drizzled over a smattering of chopped apples caused this beautiful mixture to scream, "fall!"  The combination is nothing new, except in the Green household.  I'm sure you've had similar salads just as I have.  But now that it's made its way onto our table, it'll be a regular.

Stay tuned for the return of SOUPer Saturdays, beginning this weekend.  I'm having a hard time deciding which soup to post, as I've accidentally come up with two we've really enjoyed.  Do I go with creamy and cheesy or southwestern-y and tomato-y?  Ahh... so many decisions; so little time.  

one year ago: maple-cornmeal drop biscuits
two years ago: orange-cinnamon french toast

Fall Harvest Salad
serves 2-4
For the salad:
  • 10 ounce'ish mixed baby or field greens
  • 1/4 cup sliced scallions (white parts only)
  • 1/2 cup dried cranberries
  • 1 5.5 ounce small log goat cheese, crumbled (I used herb goat cheese)
  • 1 apple (Honeycrisp or Gala are wonderful for this), cored and chopped
For the pecans:
  • 1 cup pecan halves
  • 1/4 cup honey
  • Kosher salt
For the dressing:
  • 3/4 cup olive oil
  • 1/4 cup red wine vinegar
  • 1 tbsp chopped, fresh thyme
  • 1 tbsp Dijon mustard
  • 2 "swirls" of maple syrup 
~ Heat oven to 350 degrees.

~ Place all salad ingredients in a bowl.

~ Spread pecan halves in a single layer on a baking sheet and bake for 12 minutes or until 


~ Put honey in small saucepan and add roasted pecans.  Heat and stir until mixture is 

    foamy.  Remove from heat.

~ Spread pecans on parchment-lined baking pan to cool, separating with a fork.  Sprinkle 

    with salt.

~ For the dressing, put all ingredients in a glass jar with lid and shake.  Obviously, you can 

    use a bowl, but I love doing it this way, because it's a cute serving option and leftover can 
    be easily stored.  You'll have more than you need for this salad.  

FYI's -

  • The pecans are super-sticky but SO worth it.  Just have a couple of utensils at the ready; one to pick up with and the other to get the pecan onto the salad.
  • I find it's better to "dress" the salad before serving.  Place all ingredients in the bowl, pouring the desired dressing over the top and gently "turning" the ingredients with tongs.  


No comments:

Post a Comment

Leave a comment!