I love the combination of crunchy pecans, juicy apples, and salty cheese in this salad. I also love the versatility. Swap out the apple for fresh strawberries or cranberries and the pecans for walnuts or even sunflower seeds for a completely different taste. Any sweet vinegar can be swapped for the raspberry vinegar, also.
1 cup pecan halves
4 cups of your favorite washed, dried, and chopped lettuce greens
Raspberry vinaigrette, to taste (recipe follows)
4 oz. blue cheese, Gorgonzola, or feta cheese, crumbled
2 ripe apples (0r pears), peeled, cored, and cut into bite sized pieces
Preheat oven to 350 F. Spread the pecans on a baking sheet and bake 10 minutes, shaking the pan 2-3 times during the cooking process. Remove from sheet and let cool.
Toss salad with vinaigrette. Top with pecans, blue cheese, and apples.
For a main course salad add fully-cooked, chopped chicken.
1 T mayonnaise
2 T Dijon mustard
1 clove garlic
1/4 cup raspberry vinegar
3/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
salt and pepper
Put mayo, mustard, and garlic in a blender and blend until smooth. Add vinegar and blend a few seconds more. As the blender runs, add the olive oil in a thin stream. Season with salt and pepper.