Spinach, Toffee Pecan and Goat Cheese Salad

"From the Essential Canadian Christmas Cookbook, Lovoni Walker. But most of the recipes in this book are great year-round! Tip: The toffee pecans can be made a week ahead and stored in a sealed container. The Maple Vinaigrette can be made 3 days ahead and stored in the refrigerator."
 
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photo by DeliciousAsItLooks photo by DeliciousAsItLooks
photo by DeliciousAsItLooks
photo by Simone photo by Simone
Ready In:
20mins
Ingredients:
11
Serves:
6-8
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ingredients

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directions

  • Line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Preheat oven to 350°F
  • Place pecans, touching each other, on prepared baking sheet. Toast in preheated oven for 10 minutes. Remove from oven. Set pan aside, leaving pecans on pan.
  • Meanwhile, stir sugar and water in small saucepan over medium heat until sugar is dissolved. Boil gently, without stirring, for about 5 minutes or until mixture is a deep golden color. Drizzle syrup mixture over pecans. Let stand for about 20 minutes or until cooled completely and brittle; coarsely chop.
  • Maple Vinaigrette: Shake olive oil, red wine vinegar, maple syrup, mustard and salt in a jar until well combined.
  • Toss toffee pecan, spinach, cheese and cranberries in large serving bowl. Drizzle with Maple Vinaigrette and toss.

Questions & Replies

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Reviews

  1. Simone
    I made this salad for a Friendsgiving meal and it was a hit! Will definitely make again for lunch sometime.
     
    • Review photo by Simone
  2. DeliciousAsItLooks
    This was very good. I love all of the ingredients (especially goat cheese), so I knew I would enjoy this salad. The dressing was a bit bland for me. I cut it in half (plenty for this amount of salad), but kept the amount of vinegar the same (in other words, I doubled the vinegar). I like my dressings zippy. I had a difficult time with the pecans too. The sugar mixture never browned, perhaps because I used a non-stick pan? Next time I will use another method, where you cook the pecans with just sugar in a skillet until the sugar melts and sticks to the pecans. That method works better for me. Thanks for sharing, I will make this again!
     
  3. Christy4
    Fantastic - loved the flavours. Just had this with a steak and baked potato - what a wonderful addition....mmmmmmm...
     
  4. pamelajason
    We added a touch of lime juice to the vinaigrette and it was fabulous. There is definitely way more than enough dressing... we probably drizzled 1/2 of it over the salad and it was plenty! Everyone loved the pecans the best! Thanks for the recipe:)
     
  5. pattikay in L.A.
    Wonderful salad! The pecans are lovely and the dressing is very tasty - it has a pretty potent flavor, however, so I recommend adding it to the salad in small amounts so you don't overwhelm it. Thanks for sharing!
     
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Tweaks

  1. Simone
    I replaced the dried cranberries with fresh pomegranate seeds and added cucumbers for additional freshness.
     
  2. lmercier5
    Loved it! The candied pecans really made the salad for me. I used strawberries instead of cranberries and it was wonderful!
     

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