Spinach, Portabella, Bacon & Blue Cheese in Walnut Dressing
- Ready In:
For Walnut Dressing
- 1⁄4 cup walnuts (chopped)
- 3⁄4 cup olive oil
- 1⁄2 cup vegetable stock
- 1⁄4 cup red wine vinegar (See Note #3)
- 1 teaspoon garlic (minced)
- 1 teaspoon shallot (minced)
- 1⁄4 cup walnuts (chopped)
- 1 teaspoon powdered sugar
- 4 cups fresh baby spinach leaves
- 2 cups portabella mushrooms (sliced)
- 6 slices bacon (cooked crisp & crumbled)
- 1⁄2 cup blue cheese (crumbled, may use the other British variety of Stilton)
- For Dressing: Whisk together all ingredients. Season w/salt + pepper as desired & set aside.
- Preheat oven to 375°F Toss 1/4 cup walnuts w/1 tsp powd sugar. Place on baking sheet & bake 6-8 min, stirring occ. Watch carefully to avoid burning. Set aside to cool.
- Combine spinach, sliced mushrooms & crumbled bacon in a lrg bowl. Add dressing & toss to coat.
- Divide mixture onto 6 salad plates & sprinkle w/toasted walnuts + crumbled blue cheese. Serve immediately.
- NOTE #1: I frankly did not notice that much of a distinction between the plain walnuts mixed w/the dressing & the toasted & slightly sweetened walnuts atop the salad. For that reason, I will likely just combine the 1/2 cup walnuts w/the dressing, add the tsp of powd sugar for a hint of sweetness & eliminate the toasting step.
- Note #2: As an option, feel free to sub pecans in this recipe or even use pine nuts which I think work very well w/spinach salads.
- Note #3: For those of you (like me) who do not keep red wine vinegar in your pantry, make your own using a 1:3 ratio. For this recipe using 1/4 cup, that would be 1 tbsp red wine mixed w/3 tbsp white vinegar. Too easy, huh?
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From the *Carnival Experience* cookbook & Peter Leypold (Executive Chef of Carnival Cruise Lines), this was by far my favorite salad enjoyed on our recent Carribean cruise. I entered this recipe as written, but suggest you read my notes at the end of the prep steps for a suggestion to abbreviate the prep + optional ingredient subs. This is definitely a company-worthy salad & I hope you enjoy it as much as I did. :-) (Time includes making the dressing & assembling the salads, but assumes all ingredient prep has been done in advance)
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I am an American transplanted from Dallas to Iceland by marriage to a native Icelander & I retired to become his "Kitchen Queen". We love to entertain our family & friends, so I have an eclectic collection of recipes. I especially love simple, easy-fix, flexible & make-ahead recipes - BUT also like challenging myself on occasion. I enjoy baking & food photography. I am devoted to the "More is Always Better Principle" & apply it liberally to bacon, butter & garlic. I can have ingredient issues due to availability here in Iceland & my DH is medically diet-restricted from some ingredients as well. Either situation might require me to modify a recipe, but I will do my best to be true to your recipes & fair/honest in my reviews. Mary Pat (aka twissis)