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Autumn Apple Salad

September 29, 2012

IT’S APPLE SEASON. We had an apple orchard within 2 miles of our home when the kids were young, so we spent many autumn days apple picking, cider drinking and donut eating (never got that connection). We love apples! This time of year any apple recipe stops me in my tracks. The ingredients for this simple salad may not be unusual but the presentation steals the show. Slice the apples then stack and layer these fall flavors for a tart, salty and sweet seasonal side dish.

Autumn Apple Salad                                         (Recipe by Catal Restaurant/ CA…….Bon Appetit)

1/2 cup balsamic vinegar

3 tablespoons champagne vinegar or white wine vinegar

1/2 walnut oil (I used olive)

6 to 8 cups arugula

2 red delicious apples or fuji, unpeeled, cored, thinly sliced

6 ounces spanish manchego cheese or white cheddar, shaved

1 1/2 cups pitted dates, sliced

1 cup caramelized walnuts  (recipe below)

4 large shallots, minced

Boil balsamic vinegar in small saucepan over medium heat until syrupy and reduced to 1/4 cup, about 4 minutes. (or use balsamic glaze)

Whisk oil and Champagne vinegar in bowl. Season with salt and pepper. Can be made 4 hours ahead. Rewhisk before using.

Toss arugula, apples, half the cheese, dates, walnuts and shallots in a large bowl with enough vinaigrette to coat. Season with salt and pepper.

Stack salad in the center of each plate. Alternate apple and salad mixture. Drizzle balsamic syrup around salads. Sprinkle remaining cheese on top of salad. ( A large platter could also be visually stunning by layering horizontally.)

We’re close to the Holidays and it’s time to have seasoned nuts on hand. Play with all the various recipes available and store them so you always have sweet or savory accents for your special recipes.

Caramelized Walnuts   (adapted from Bon Appetit)

2 cups walnuts

3 tablespoons light brown sugar

1 tablespoon soy sauce

1/2 teaspoon tabasco

1/4 teaspoon salt

1/4 teaspoon paprika

1/8 teaspoon cayenne pepper

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line baking sheet with parchment paper. Coat with non-stick spray. Mix walnuts and all ingredients in a medium bowl. Spread out in an even layer. Bake for 15 minutes, stirring approximately every 5 minutes.

2 Comments leave one →
  1. September 29, 2012 2:56 am

    Yum!!

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