salad

Mesclun Salad with Goat Cheese, Maple-Glazed Pecans and Maple Dijon Vinaigrette

This is the perfect fall salad for entertaining. The dressing has that savory-sweet flavor combo that everyone loves.

Servings: 6

Ingredients

For the Pecans

  • 1 cup (4 ounces) pecan halves
  • 2 tablespoons real maple syrup
  • Pinch salt

For the Vinaigrette

  • 1 small garlic clove, minced
  • 1 tablespoon finely chopped shallots
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 1-1/2 tablespoons real maple syrup
  • 2 teaspoons Dijon mustard
  • 2 tablespoons red wine vinegar
  • 6 tablespoons vegetable oil

For the Salad

  • 10 cups mesclun greens (or favorite mixed greens such as green or red leaf, boston, bibb, or romaine)
  • 3 ounces goat cheese (or blue cheese), crumbled

Instructions

For the Pecans

  1. Preheat the oven to 375 degrees. Lightly oil or line 2 baking sheets with parchment paper. In a small bowl, combine the pecans and maple syrup and toss gently to combine. Spread the pecans in a single layer on one of the prepared baking sheets. Roast in the preheated oven, stirring once, until the syrup is bubbling vigorously, about 5 minutes. Immediately scrape the glazed pecans onto the other prepared baking sheet, spreading them in a single layer. Sprinkle with a pinch of salt and set aside to cool.

For the Vinaigrette

  1. In a small bowl, whisk together the garlic, shallots, salt, pepper, maple syrup, mustard and vinegar. Whisking constantly, slowly add the oil in a steady stream. (Alternatively, add all your ingredients to a jar, cover with lid, and shake vigorously to blend.) Set aside.

For the Salad

  1. Place the greens in a large bowl, drizzle with about half of the vinaigrette and toss to combine. Add as much of the remaining vinaigrette as desired and toss again. Divide among individual plates, sprinkle with the cheese and reserved pecans and serve immediately.

Gluten-Free Adaptable Note

To the best of my knowledge, all of the ingredients used in this recipe are gluten-free or widely available in gluten-free versions. There is hidden gluten in many foods; if you're following a gluten-free diet or cooking for someone with gluten allergies, always read the labels of your ingredients to verify that they are gluten-free.