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Fall Harvest Salad #1

When I set out to make this salad there were a number of things running through my mind.  First and foremost was the fact that I had just returned from over a week on the road, and travel for me usually means too much to eat, too much to drink, not enough sleep, and too little control over all of these things.  Sometimes it’s self imposed, sometimes I am subject to the circumstances.  But either way, by the time I get back from a trip I am ready to press the reset button and put myself through a bit of a dietary detox.  I think a shake up like this is good for the system.

The other thing that went through my head was that it is now fall, and fall ingredients are appearing at the farmer’s market and on the shelves at the grocery store.  Every year at fall I have a short little panic – “summer ingredients are disappearing, how am I ever going to eat all the fresh fruits and vegetables I’ve been eating all summer?”  Then I have a moment of realization, am thankful that I live in California where produce is plentiful, and remind myself that fall is where it’s at.  It’s harvest season, and though tomatoes and stone fruit may not be on offer, there is absolutely no shortage of perfect fall produce to throw in the mix.

Fall is my favorite culinary season, and it’s due to the appearance of foods like pomegranates and persimmons.  These are perfect to throw into salads, and as lettuces and greens do not go away with the calendar change, I consider the fall the true salad season.  Look for new and different leafy green vegetables to pop up at your farmer’s market, and start grabbing all the different fruits and vegetables that have not been available to you since last year.  Toss in a few nuts or seeds, and maybe some protein of some sort, and you’ve got endless salad possibilities.  Particularly during the week, salads are my fall back dinner plan.  Over the coming months I’ll make a concerted effort to make some awesome fall salads on Rooted.  Keeping it light now will prepare you for the lean winter months, when you’ll be wanting to beef up the heartiness of your dishes….

As for the salad names, I’ll keep them exciting.

Ingredients

-6 cups mixed lettuces / greens (I just pulled a bunch of stuff from my garden haphazardly); chopped

-2 roasted chicken breasts (optional)

-seeds from one pomegranate

-1 cucumber, peeled and sliced 1/4 inch

-1/2 cup roasted cashews

-1 avocado, cut into 1/4 inch pieces

-1 Granny Smith apple, sliced into 1/4 inch spears

-1/2 cup (about) shredded manchego cheese

Dressing

-Juice from 1/2 lemon

-1/2 cup olive oil

-1 t anchovy paste

-1 T creme fraiche

-black pepper

-1 clove garlic, minced

Total time:  20 minutes

Serves: 4

Combine all salad ingredients.  In a separate bowl, combine dressing ingredients and whisk well.  Top salad with dressing and toss to coat.

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Recipe ID: 1885

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