To be fair, I like my salads with fruit in them, I really do. However, when I received my recipe for a fruit swap and it was a spinach salad with apples, walnuts, and goat cheese I was seriously concerned. The problem is that I do not like spinach unless it's cooked, I don't generally eat nuts, and goat cheese is one of my least favorite cheeses. The dressing did sound amazing though so I decided to revamp the recipe into something I could eat.
Changing the base of the salad was easy. I just substituted mixed greens for the spinach. I left the apples alone because I love the tartness of the apples in my salads. The walnuts were substituted with pecans which I don't really eat but my husband enjoys. Finally I swapped out the goat cheese with crumbly feta. My salad looked surprisingly similar to the original and it tasted great.
The warm honey dressing really makes this salad. I thought it might be too sweet but with the shallots, oil, and vinegar it's perfect. Sweet, sour, and tangy it pairs so well with the greens, sweet apples, and creamy cheese. I'd love to add a protein to this salad and make it an entree salad.
Mixed Greens and Apple Salad with Warm Honey Dressing (adapted from Sweet Beginnings)
4 c. mixed greens
1/4 c. pecan halves
1 apple (I used Gala)
1 large shallot peeled and cut into thin rings
1/4 c. olive oil
3 T. apple cider vinegar
4 T. honey
1 t. black pepper
1/2 c. feta cheese
1. Corn the apple and cut it into thin slices.
2. Heat the olive oil in a medium skillet over medium heat. Add the shallot and cook for 5 minutes or until the shallot begins to brown.
3. In a large bowl mix the greens and the pecans. Set aside.
4. Once the shallots are soft and brown add the apple slices to the pan. Sprinkle with black pepper and honey. Stir together long enough to coat the apples.
5. Pour the vinegar over the apples and mix well.
6. Pour the entire mixture from the pan over top of the mixed greens and toss to combine. Sprinkle with feta cheese and serve.
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