Tuesday, December 6, 2011

Now Serving...Cranberry Christmas Salad

Thank you WTNZ Fox43 for letting me prepare this salad on your show this morning! 

I just love food!  And for Christmas, I love festive food.  So we're making a Cranberry Christmas Salad today...and it's a fresh salad, not the jiggly kind.  Nothing against jiggly salads, thighs, etc - that's just not what we're making today. Our Christmas salad has green spinach, red(dish) craisins, and plenty of other great flavors.  Here is the finished product:
It looks simple, and the good news is- It is!  Because I'm not a complicated recipe kind of girl at this point in my life. But I do like to play with food, and that is how this started.  I had cranberries:
12 oz, to be exact.
And, I had been making cranberry sauce for our November panini, so it seemed an easy transition to make Cranberry Syrup. 
Put 12 oz cranberries, 2 c sugar, and 2 c water in a pot. 
Boil until cranberries burst and simmer for a few minutes:

This is when the cranberries just begin to burst and your kitchen begins smelling very good! 
After simmering, strain the solids from the syrup.
Now you have about 2.5 cups of delicious cranberry syrup that can be used in different things.  For example, try Iced Cranberry Tea by adding 2 oz cranberry syrup to 6 oz sweet tea, and pouring over ice.  You can adjust the measurements for your taste.
But for our salad, I made a Cranberry Vinaigrette!
Add 4 oz Cranberry Syrup, 7 oz olive oil, 1 oz balsamic vinegar, 2 tbsp white vinegar, 1 pressed garlic clove, and salt to taste.    Whisk it together in a bowl or in a "Measure,Mix, and Pour" from Pampered Chef.  I love those for salad dressings! 
Before putting the salad together, toast the chopped pecans. 
I put them in a single layer on a baking sheet in a 350 degree oven for about 7 minutes. As soon as you can smell them, take them out of the oven so they don't burn.

For the salad, I used 10 oz Fresh Spinach, 1 cup Craisins, 6 slices cooked and crumbled bacon, 1 cup Toasted Pecans, and 4 oz Crumbled Goat Cheese.

I would recommend tossing the Spinach leaves in the dressing before adding the other ingredients. The smaller ingredients fall to the bottom of the mix, so it's not quite as pretty if you toss it all together. And add the goat cheese as the final topping to keep it bright and white!

 Of course I didn't decide this was the best method until after I tried it. The good news is that it still tasted fantastic.  Let me know how yours turns out!  Or if you want to try ours, we will be serving it Monday- Saturday from 11 am- 4 pm at The Tin Roof Cafe. Merry Christmas!

1 comment:

  1. Looks Yummy! Can't wait to try it! Thanks for sharing!