Taste of Fall Salad

Posted by Vanessa in Cooking, October 20, 2010


I was going to post a breakfast recipe today.  Then I checked the blog and realized it would be the third morning food in a row, and I thought you might want some variety.

Even though you may (or very well may not) be wondering where in the world I’ve been lately.  I mean, does it even count as “in a row” if the posts are weeks apart?

But just in case you’re wondering…I think I mentioned that we moved a couple weeks ago.  So there’s something.  And I also agreed to organize a fall festival for our church.  There’s a BIG something.  And The Phoenix travels like it’s his new hobby (just kidding, dear, we’re doing just fine without you…but please, please come home soon).  Oh yeah, and I still have two kiddos that very much like it when I play in their new tee-pee with them, making up Indian names and watching out for the “dog-walkers”.  And I like to make them smile, so if you need me and can’t find me, chances are you can find me whispering with Pink Rose and Footy-Bowl in our new spot.  Seriously, who comes up with names like that?  Oh yeah, that was all me.  Don’t judge though, they love them. So, yes, I haven’t exactly had much time to blog.

But, today, today I’m making time.  Because we’ve eaten this salad at least a dozen times.  Because the ingredients (well, the pears) are in season now.  And because sometimes I feel like all a dinner needs to feel a little extra special in our house is a salad with a few fun ingredients to go with whatever else we’re having.

You can make the candied, spiced pecans and the dressing ahead of time, even the day before, which makes throwing this side salad together right before dinner easy peasy.  And I didn’t mention this in the recipe, but most of the time when I make salad dressings I just throw all the ingredients in a mason jar, put the lid on and shake like crazy.

The Phoenix and I love this salad, and I hope you do too.

Taste of Fall Salad

recipe from Taste of Home
  • Prep Time: 15 minutes.
  • Cook Time: 5 minutes.
  • Ready in 20 Minutes.
  • Makes: 6 Servings
  • 2/3 cup pecan halves
  • 1/4 cup balsamic vinegar, divided
  • a dash of cayenne pepper
  • a dash of ground cinnamon
  • 3 tablespoons sugar, divided
  • 1 package (5 ounces) spring mix salad greens
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
  • 1/8 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1 medium pear, thinly sliced
  • 1/4 cup shredded Parmesan cheese
  • In a large heavy skillet, cook the pecans, 2 tablespoons vinegar, cayenne and cinnamon over medium heat until nuts are toasted, about 3-4 minutes. Sprinkle with 1 tablespoon sugar. Cook and stir for 2-3 minutes or until sugar is melted. Be careful not to burn nuts. Spread on foil to cool.
  • Place salad greens in a large bowl. In a small bowl, whisk the oil, mustard, salt and remaining vinegar and sugar; drizzle over greens and toss to coat. Arrange the greens, pear slices and pecans on six salad plates. Sprinkle with cheese.

I’ll be back soon with a new, completely indulgent, breakfast recipe.  I can hardly wait!

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