Thursday, December 13, 2007

Winter Salad of Russet Apple, Pomegranate and Pecans

After all these sweets my teeth are starting to ache a little. Snow is piled up two feet deep over the garden and I am starting to crave something fresh. A deep rummage in my fridge unveils the ingredients for this ideal winter salad. Bright and pretty, crunchy and juicy, it satisfies that need for something healthy and light amidst all the rich holiday goodies. As a nice bonus, the colors are rather festive too!
(An alternate name could be 'Play-Date Salad' as it is a perfect salad to whip up for those Mama's looking for a light lunch. We sure enjoyed ours.)

Things have been busy here at Under the High Chair:
Extensive baking is still underway, with pretty packages of it being shipped to loved ones in New Mexico and British Columbia. A bake sale fund raiser I organized raised over $500 that will be turned into food baskets for needy family in the neighborhood. After three months of practice, our Christmas cantata gives two performances this weekend and we are looking forward to having that over and done with! (I am trying to remind myself why on earth I agreed to do a solo...) Gifts are slowly being made or purchased and wrapped up prettily. Grocery lists are getting longer and longer as menus are being formed and reworked.
I am thrilled that we have mounds of fluffy white snow and that I can organize a tobogganing party, just like my family hosted every year when I was growing up. Those are some Christmas memories worth repeating. Chili and Cornbread, anyone?

Here's wishing you all an enjoyable and relaxed week-end leading into the last few days before Christmas!

Winter Salad of Russet Apple, Pomegranate, and Pecans

1 russet apple, julienne
1 pomegranate, seeds removed
1 stalk firm celery, julienne
¼ cup pecans, lightly toasted and roughly chopped
1 shallot, julienne
2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
2 tablespoons grape seed oil
Salt and pepper

In a very small saucepan, bring apple cider vinegar to a boil. Pour over julienne shallots and allow to cool to room temperature. Mix in grape seed oil and set aside.

Reserve about ¼ cup of the pomegranate seeds and crush the rest to extract the juice. Pour off the juice into a wide, shallow bowl and place in microwave. Microwave on high for three minutes, then scrape down sides with a spatula a stir slightly. Juice will be reducing and thickening. Microwave, one minute at a time, checking consistency between each minute until juice is consistency of maple syrup. Cool.

In a bowl, toss together the apple, reserved pomegranate seeds, celery, and shallots and some of the apple cider marinade. Season with salt and pepper and add more vinaigrette if needed. Add pecans, toss and mound onto a plate. Drizzle with pomegranate reduction and serve.


Cookie baker Lynn said...

This sounds like the perfect antidote to the overly sugary feeling I get from my divinity. (Although the divinity really is worth it.) I love the pomegranate seeds sparkling in it!

test it comm said...

An apple based salad with pecans and pomegranates sounds nice and crisp and refreshing.

Chibog in Chief said...

wow lovely marriage of apple, pecans and pomegranates :-)!!!and nice photos too!!goodluck to your christmas cantata!!

Valerie Harrison (bellini) said...

Sounds like you are having a busy and loving Christmas season so far. I know what you mean about craving something fresh!!!

Patricia Scarpin said...

I'm always searching for new great salad recipes, Aimée - yours looks wonderful, I'll give it a try!

Dana said...

I made a semi-similar salad recently. This looks absolutely delicious!!

aya said...

looks amazing. beautiful photos too!

Half Baked said...

Yummy looking salad! With all the pecans I've got this year I'm looking to use them in everything!

Anonymous said...

I'll just tell you, if you dug around in the bottom of my fridge you certainly wouldn't find anything that healthy looking!

Aimée said...

Hi Lynn- It's a nice break from all the sweetness of your peanut butter fudge that I have been eating, too!

Hi Kevin- It is almost nice enough to make up for the lack of fresh garden greens tat I usually enjoy from my garden.

Hi dhanggit- Thanks! You are most welcome here at UtHC! Thanks for dropping by.

Hi Valli-So far so good, I mean there's great food, so it has to be good, right?

Hi Patricia- You'll probably play around with it to suit your taste, but, it's a good combination.

Hi Dana- Thanks!

Hi Aya- Thank you so much and welcome to Under the High Chair!

Hi half baked- I've got a serious pecan stash, too. Any ideas?

Hi Miranda- I'd be scared to even open your fridge. Really.

David Hall said...

Come and collect your award for a top post at Cerys the Well Done Angel Awards! x

kickpleat said...

yum, i love salads with apples and pecans. throw in pomegranate and i'm swooning. lovely!

Unknown said...

Dang Aimée! Apples again! Sweet mother of mercy!*

*just an expression, I don't consider you the sweet mother of mercy, not with posts like this. It's driving me insane!


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