Thursday, February 28, 2008

Pignoli and Pear Salad

There's nothing quite like a good salad. My cousin mentioned once that salads almost always taste better at restaurants than when you make them at home. I completely agreed, until I discovered why -- it's all in the toss. You need a big, ole bowl and some sturdy tongs to do it right. Before my discovery, my approach was simple: make my salad, drizzle the dressing on top. This probably isn't news to most of you -- tossing a salad until everything is coated lightly in dressing makes sense, but it was a step I skipped in order to save time, and I thought -- calories. I use the same amount of dressing as I always have, probably one and a half tablespoons for a salad the size of the one pictured above, but now I take that extra step (and often create more dishes for myself to do) and give it a proper toss.

I went grocery shopping last night and noticed some great looking Bartlett pears and this afternoon when I was in my cupboard, I noticed some pignoli's (aka, pine nuts) that I had forgotten about. And from there came my pignoli and pear salad. The dressing below (I LOVE when products are labeled gluten-free, bravo Maple Grove Farms!) is a Ginger Pear dressing made with white balsamic vinegar. I marinated some turkey tenderloin in the dressing for a few hours this morning and grilled them up to serve with the salad.

Pignoli and Pear Salad

1 cup of salad greens (I used spinach and red leaf lettuce)
1 tablespoon toasted pignoli's (simply place in a pan on medium heat and cook for a few minutes until slightly brown)
1/2 bartlett pear, cut into slices
Grilled turkey tenderloin marinated in dressing (optional)

In a large bowl, combine all of the ingredients, plus a few tablespoons of the Maple Grove Ginger Pear dressing. With tongs, thoroughly toss the salad until each piece has been lightly coated with the dressing. Place in a prettier bowl (or eat out of the large one if no one's watching) and eat with a hunk of good bread. I had some Bob's Red Mill Hearty Whole Grain Bread that I baked in the bread maker the night before.


Anonymous said...

Sounds yummy. I'm not a huge fan of pears, but for some reason, I think they go very well with salad greens! I'm going to try your idea about tossing properly, too (since I hardly ever use my tongs for anything else, anyway!).

Liz said...

Hey Ricki! Pears do go really well in salad greens, and I have to admit too that I'm not a huge pear fan when eaten alone, but the tang of the dressing and the crunch of the pignoli's does wonders.

K Allrich said...

I love pears in salad! Yours looks fresh, inviting and delicious. Sweet pup, too! ;)

Vittoria said...

That salad looks scrumptious! It's great to see gluten free dressings.

Liz said...

Thanks, Karina! This is pretty dorky, but I'm pretty psyched to have you comment on my blog (since you are the essential gf blog) :)

It is, Vittoria. Luckily, I've been seeing more and more out there. Brianna's is another brand I love when I'm too lazy to make my own.

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