Another quick post today, and a bit of a fluff post really because it’s a salad. More than a recipe, today’s post is a reminder to include a salad on your Thanksgiving table! If y’all are anything like me, I get lost making a huge menu full of oozy, gooey, creamy and indulgent dishes. It seems that a Thanksgiving dish by definition should include a pound of butter and double that of sugar! I remember one year, I tried remaking my husband’s family’s sweet potato casserole with a bit less butter and sugar. It didn’t work; it just didn’t taste the same and so the following year, I went back to the original recipe.
Back in Texas, for many years I was the sole cook for Thanksgiving dinner and there, I didn’t bother with a salad after the first year where everything finished except the salad! I knew it just wasn’t worth the effort with my extended family. Now that the children are older and they all love salad, we finish it with no problem. The biggest salad eater is actually Laith, my 8 year old. He absolutely loves salad and he was the recipient of the salad that was photographed.
I thought that I would go ahead and post the salad I will be making for our dinner tomorrow evening. You may have all the ingredients needed in your fridge already and so it will be easy to throw together. If you don’t then just put together a salad with stuff you have. Like all salads, this one is versatile and open to substitutions, like I said, it’s only to inspire!
I wanted to use seasonal fruits and vegetables, and then have a nice, tart dressing to go with it to cut the richness of the other dishes. Some crunchy, sweet and cinnamon-y sugared hazelnuts completes the festive Spinach, Beet and Pear Salad with Pomegranate Vinaigrette.
My photographs show a composed salad because I didn’t want the beets to colour the whole thing pink. Tomorrow, I’ll be layering it and placing the beets last on top.
The sugared hazelnuts, or any nuts of your choice can be store bought if you happen to have some in your store cupboard, but they are very easy to make and there are many recipes out there. I used this recipe and just adapted it with my nut of choice.
- 4 cups spinach
- 2 medium beets, roasted or jarred
- 2 pears, sliced thin
- 1 15oz/425g tin mandarin oranges
- ½ red onion, sliced
- ½ cup sugared, candied hazelnuts
- 2 tablespoons pomegranate molasses
- 2 tablespoons honey or agave syrup
- juice of lemon/lime/orange
- ⅓ cup olive oil, extra virgin
- salt and pepper
- Not much direction needed!
- Arrange the salad on a plate and drizzle the dressing over the top.
- Sprinkle over the candied nuts.
- Whisk the molasses, honey, lemon juice together and drizzle in the olive oil.
- Taste for salt, pepper and sweetness, adjust as needed.
So, since I love to know what everyone is cooking, what’s on your table tomorrow? I’ll start. I mentioned we were having a pot luck at my house with some great friends and we’re all cooking something different. My dishes are: creamed corn, sweet potato casserole, mashed potatoes, stuffing and this salad. I also have a few desserts; a pumpkin cheesecake tart, pecan pie and a banoffee pie. My friends are bringing turkey, gravy, cranberry sauce, asparagus, cauliflower cheese, potato wedges, green beans, buckeyes, dinner rolls, flan and fruit tart! We will be very thankful for our incredibly wonderful meal.
I would like to wish my US readers and friends a very Happy Thanksgiving, and Happy Hanukkah to my Jewish readers and friends.