Winter Salad with Maple-Dijon Vinaigrette
Winter is the season of weight gain. This is not just my self observation it's actually fact. People on average gain about 4 pounds during the winter! Whether we eat more to keep warm, or because we are bored, or because there is less outdoor exercise or because of Chanukah (gained 4 pounds on Chanukah alone!), or because our bodies subconsciously think we still are going to hibernate for the winter- those pounds find their way every winter. It doesn't help that we (we meaning I)wear layers and bulky sweaters and sweatshirts with lots of room in them so we (I, again) don't feel the weight creeping on. This tirade was not to make you run to the scale or make you (me) put down the chocolate covered oreo, rather it's to guilt you into making this salad. Not too much guilt should be needed though because this salad rocks. It's crunchy, and sweet and tangy and I want to eat it all day long (after I finish my oreo) and I think the colorfulness of it helps to beat the winter blues. So eat lots of this salad and others but if you are anything like me who has no chance against the winter four, then just be glad that spring is only a few weeks away. Enjoy!
2 heads Romaine Lettuce
2 firm but ripe pears, sliced thinly
3 persimmons, sliced thinly
1/2 cup dried cranberries
1 red onion, sliced
candied almonds or pecans
3/4 cup crumbled goat cheese (not pictures here)
1/4 cup real maple syrup
1 shallot minced
4 Tbl red wine vinegar
1/3 cup canola oil
1 Tbl Dijon mustard (preferably whole grain)
salt and pepper to taste
Whisk together and pour over salad.