Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Autumn Chopped Salad

I have to admit that in my house the salads that accompany our meals are usually a last minute, thrown together, whatever-I-have-in-my-vegetable-drawer concoction. Not a whole lot of though or time is put into salad preparation. But a few weekends ago I decided maybe I could go the extra mile and make a yummy salad to go along side Sunday dinner. Sure glad I did because this salad is beyond good. It was the first thing gone on the dinner table, even before the homemade rolls! There are so many textures and flavors the spicy sweet pecans and salty bacon, the juicy pears and chewy cranberries...it all goes so well together! Make this before pears are out of season!
Autumn Chopped Salad
4 cups chopped romaine lettuce
4 cups baby spring mix lettuce 
3 medium pears, medium diced
1 cup dried cranberries
1 cup chopped sugared pecans
8 slices bacon, cooked and crumbled
6 oz. feta cheese, crumbled
Poppy seed Salad Dressing (I like Brianna's Home Style Dressing)
On a large platter, combine the lettuce, pears, cranberries, pecans, bacon and feta cheese. Drizzle with poppy seed dressing (I would estimate that I use about a 1/2 cup of dressing, use as much as you prefer). Toss the salad gently so you don't smash the pears and serve immediately. (If you don't want to serve it right away hold off on dressing your salad until right before dinner time, and at the last minute toss in freshly diced pears and sugared pecans too.
Quick Sugared Pecans:
2 tablespoons butter
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon pepper
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/8 teaspoon ground cloves
1/8 teaspoon ground allspice
2 cups pecan halves
2 tablespoons sugar
For the pecans, melt the butter in a 12-inch nonstick skillet over medium-low heat. Stir in the spices and 1 tablespoon of sugar and then the pecans. Toast the nuts, stirring often, until the color deepens slightly and they are lightly toasted, about 5-7 minutes. Transfer the nuts to a bowl and toss with the remaining sugar. Let them cool completely spread out on a sheet pan or large plate before tossing with the salad.


  1. yum! would you like to follow each other in gfc? let me know!