This salad is inspired by Vicki Jordan. She made it for a family gathering one time and after that, I would ask her to make for every family gathering possible (no matter what the reason or how small the gathering). I was addicted. I wanted to make a salad for Thanksgiving and somehow this salad came to mind (Vicki and I haven’t shared family gatherings for over 10 years now). I knew this was the perfect salad to bring. It is simple yet its combination of ingredients bring a rich complexity of flavor. It has now returned to be one of my go-to salads as I am once again addicted.
So throw this salad together and become a fellow addict. You won’t be sorry.
Pear, Goat Cheese, Caramelized Pecan, and Spinach Salad (Paleo-ish)
1 head of organic spinach or 1 – 5 oz. container organic spinach
1 organic pear, cut in half, sliced into ¼” long slices and then halve the slices
¼ red onion, cut into thin slivers
4 oz. goat cheese
1 cup pecans
1 Tablespoon unsalted grass-fed butter
¼ teaspoon cinnamon
¼ teaspoon sea salt
1/3 cup coconut sugar
2 Tablespoons organic olive oil
2 Tablespoons organic white wine vinegar
Salt and pepper to taste
Heat the butter over medium heat in a cast iron skillet. Add the sugar, cinnamon and salt. Stir to combine. Lower the heat. Add the pecans. Stir constantly. Syrup will start to form. Keep stirring until the pecans are coated with the syrup (there will be some leftover syrup). Remove from heat and let cool.
Throw the spinach into a large salad bowl. Add the pear and onion. Add the goat cheese by scooping out small spoonfuls and adding them to the salad. Add the caramelized pecans. Add 2 Tablespoons olive oil and 2 Tablespoons white wine vinegar. Toss the salad to combine all the ingredients. Add salt and pepper to taste. Serve on individual salad plates. Serves 4-6.