Since the holidays are coming up I thought I would share the salad that all of my guests rave about. You will find three recipes below: Candied Walnuts, Balsamic Dressing and how to arrange this all together with baby greens or spring greens; and top it all off with dried cranberries and optional feta cheese. This recipe can be made with sugar or agave syrup. I have used both successfully, notice no difference, and they both taste excellent! – and so easy to make! Enjoy this candied walnut salad, along with your guests.
- 2 Tablespoon butter, salted or unsalted (or olive oil)
- 1 Tablespoon balsamic vinegar
- 1 Tablespoon sugar or agave syrup
- 2 cups walnuts
- A sheet of aluminum foil or wax paper
- 1/4 cup balsamic vinegar
- 1 tablespoon gluten free mustard (French's and Grey Poupon were gluten-free last time I checked)
- 2 teaspoons light or dark brown sugar or agave syrup
- 3/4 teaspoon fresh ground pepper
- 3/4 cup olive oil
- 2 cloves garlic, minced (optional)
- 2 bags Spring Mix (or if available, straight from your garden)
- Dried cranberries
- Feta cheese (optional)
- In a non-stick frying pan, melt the butter on about medium heat (not too high if using butter or it may burn).
- Add the sugar/agave and vinegar, stirring well, and cooking until the sugar is dissolved and well blended.
- Add the walnuts and stir; cook for about 4-5 minutes.
- Remove the nuts from the skillet and place them on a sheet of aluminum foil or wax paper until completely cool.
- Place a paper towel or cheese cloth inside a sealable container or ziplock bag. (This prevents the nuts from absorbing moisture.)
- Layer the nuts on top of the paper or cloth.
- Store in a cool place.
- Add all the above ingredients except the pepper in a measuring cup (easy pour spout makes it easy to pour).
- Whisk together.
- Set aside overnight in an air-tight container.
- If using, strain the garlic out of the dressing, if desired.
- Add pepper and stir.
- Pour into a container with a pour spout. You may serve it in a creamer, if you do not have a dressing container.
- Arrange a serving size portion of baby greens or spring greens on each salad plate.
- Top with candied walnuts and dried cranberries.
- Allow each guest to add their own dressing. Warn them that a little goes a long way. You can set a dish of feta cheese out for guests who like it. Have additional fresh ground pepper available for those who desire more.
The walnuts should be made in advance and stored to make your cooking day a breeze.