From the kitchen of One Perfect Bite...Tucked in among the fancy and time consuming dishes that appear on my Christmas table, you will find a few that are nearly effortless to prepare. This salad is one of them. It uses bagged salad greens and sundry ingredients that can be purchased or made well ahead of time. I prefer to make my own candied walnut because I can control their sweetness, but you can buy excellent candied nuts in any large grocery store. If you'd like to make your own, my recipe can be found here. The cranberry vinaigrette adds wonderful color to the table and it is tart enough to clear a palate that may have been sampling too many rich appetizers. Given my druthers, I'd prefer to serve the salad at the end of the meal, but I've learned, the hard way, I might add, that not everyone subscribes to the French way of doing thing, so, if we have guests at the table, salad starts the feast. I individually plate this salad and bring it to the table with dressing drizzled over the greens. That preserves their lovely color and assures that everyone gets a fair share of the components that make the salad special. I do hope you'll keep this recipe in mind, if not for Christmas, then perhaps for another occasion. Here is how this colorful salad is made.
Tossed Salad with Apples,Walnuts and Cranberry Vinaigrette...from the kitchen of One Perfect Bite courtesy of Taste of Home Best Holiday Recipes
1 cup fresh or frozen cranberries
1/3 cup sugar
1/3 cup water
1/2 cup cider vinegar
1-1/2 teaspoons Dijon mustard
3 tablespoons olive oil
2 packages (5 ounces each) spring mix salad greens
1 package (5 ounces) frisee lettuce
1 large tart (red) apple, chopped
2/3 cup dried cranberries
2/3 cup candied walnuts
2/3 cup crumbled blue cheese
1) Combine cranberries, sugar and water in a small saucepan. Cook over medium heat until berries pop, about 10 minutes.
2) Place cranberry mixture, vinegar and mustard in a blender, cover and process until pureed. While processing, gradually add oil in a steady stream. Refrigerate until serving.
3) Just before serving, combine the salad greens, apple, cranberries and walnuts in a large bowl. Drizzle with 1 cup vinaigrette and toss to coat. Sprinkle with blue cheese. Serve with remaining vinaigrette. Yield: 8 servings.
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