Friday, November 11, 2011

Food on Friday: Thanksgiving salad

The salad, right before it all went down my belly!

Contrary to the impression that I have given you, soup is not the only thing I know how to cook.  I can also make salads. ;-) Technical stuff, I know.  Honestly, though, the reason I am featuring this salad recipe today is that it seriously the best salad ever, it is an autumn salad and it would compliment your Thanksgiving meal perfectly (if your family is the kind of family that has salad on Thanksgiving...mine is not...we don't have it unless it is slathered in butter).  It would be a great side instead of green beans and would also be great at a vegetarian Thanksgiving.  Or, take out the feta, add some kind of substitute and serve it for a vegan Thanksgiving.  It’s also a nice dinner salad if you like light meals.  
Ingredients for the pears.  Really, what is better than fruit, butter and sugar?
 There are two versions of it.  The one you choose should depend on what you are in the mood for: something more comforting and winter-y or something a little bit lighter.  The more comforting version is made with pears a la Alysha (sautéed in butter, named after my beautiful lawyer friend) and the lighter, perhaps more summery version, is made with apples.  Both are seriously delicious and are a favorite in my house (and now in my mom’s). 
Ingredients for the salad, minus the cranberries, unfortunately. 
 Think about this for your next holiday party.  Seriously.  And, as always, enjoy. 
For the pears
 2 unripened pear, preferably bartlet, thinly sliced
1 1/2 tablespoon of butter
a few pinches of sugar
1 pinch of cinnamon.
On the stove, heat butter in a skillet over low-medium heat.  Add the pears when the butter is hot and sprinkle the top with a pinch of sugar.  Flip and do the same on the other side.  Cook until just soft, about 2 minutes on each side.  Remove from heat and place on a paper towel while you prepare the salad. 
For the dressing
3 tablespoons high quality olive oil
1 tablespoon white balsamic vinegar 
1/2 teaspoon sugar
1/3 teaspoon mustard
1 pinch salt
a bit of cracked black pepper
Add all ingredients to a jar and shake.  
For the salad
300 grams spring greens
pear from above-OR- 1 apple thinly sliced with slices cut in half
85 g (3 oz) feta, cubed 
1 small red onion, halved and sliced 
1 large handful chopped walnuts (you could also make these candied walnuts)
1 handful dried cranberries
*Jamie's dressing
Toss all ingredients together in a large bowl, drizzle with dressing.  Serve immediately. 
*In my opinion, it is really, really important to go with a fresh dressing on this one...I think it really enhances the freshness.

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