Today, I had to run some errands up in the NE of town, a part of town that I love and is foodie heaven. I planned to stop by the Italian store and pick up some arugula. This morning, I was thinking that the salad I was going to make was going to make itself known once I stepped foot into the shoppe. It's like I was going to be taking my own trip to Tuscany today! My honey planned a roast beef (Tuesday night dinners are his thing), and so my plan was to make a fresh Italian inspired salad to go with the yams and beef. Arugula it was. This was the image I had in my mind as I set off for my errands on this drizzly day in Calgary:
There were fresh veggies, and cheeses galore, and antipastos that I could have easily grabbed. But those antipastos are packed in oils that may have gone rancid (and soy oils, not to mention! They're a no-go in my books.) And cheese, well I have a lot of that on a regular basis, I wanted to opt for a dairy free salad tonight. A fairly simple salad is what came about, one that even my little (10 year old) liked! I can't rank this salad, as it is one off the top of my head. That would be cheating! But I invite you to try it on for size, and tell me what you think. Or what you'd tweak!
ARUGULA SALAD WITH WALNUTS AND CRANBERRIES
4 cups arugula
handful of chives (I grabbed 4 stalks from my garden)
1/4 cup of dried cranberries
optional: a handful of spinach or sorrel leaves (Hotchkiss grows sorrel, available at Amaranth), shredded thinly (sorrel adds a nice lemony bite, and is so supportive to your liver! Plus it's a super perennial in your garden. My fave.)
You can simply use 1/4 cup soaked and dehydrated walnuts
Melt 1 tbsp of butter in a warm pan.
Add 1/4 cup of soaked and dehydrated walnuts, toss enough to coat and warm nuts.
Add 1 tbsp of honey, toss enough to coat and meld.
Add 1/2 tbsp of Apple Cider Vinegar to deglaze pan.
Add 1/2 tsp of smoked paprika and pinch of salt.
Mix until it is all glommed together, and let cool on parchment paper.
When completely cooled, add them to your salad.
1 1/2 tbsp of good quality olive oil
2 tsp of good quality balsamic vinegar (I used Blue Door Oil & Vinegar's Red Apple Balsamic on this salad)
pinch of salt
grind of pepper
Dress your salad just before serving. Eat up. With glee.
How this works: weekday mornings, I post my intention on my Facebook page. Weekday evenings, I post here on the blog the recipe or source of the recipe, and link to it on all social media accounts. Thanks to locals Blue Door Oil & Vinegar and to my own garden for the local stuff today, and to the Italian Store for the fresh arugula.