Mixing Up the Green

Whilst the elders of our families are around, I continue to be stuck with salad detail on Turkey Day.  Once I made the entire meal for the entire family. Once. The whole shebang: the resident roasted turkey, cornbread/sausage stuffing, homemade mashed potatoes, sweet potato pie, and spinach/artichoke dip and veggies, etc. etc. etc.......

Since I get stuck with salad prep at least once per year, I like to make it interesting. I refuse to make the standard iceberg bowl with cheddar, tomatoes, onions and croutons. Nope, not me. You want salad from me, come prepared for a salad the likes of which you've probably never heard of nor seen.  Yesterday was no exception.

A whole bunch of stuff was on sale or I had a coupon during last week's journey to the market of supers......so I got organic greens and spinach on clearance, a pomegranate, some pomegranate vinaigrette and goat cheese. Pecans, too.  Here's what happened to it:

Mixed Up Greens with Pecans, Pomegranate and Goat Cheese


  • Earthbound Farms Organic Baby Spinach (1 container)
  • Earthbound Farms Organic Herb Blend (1 container) 
  • Dole Classic Romaine (1/3 to 1/2 bag) 
  • Iceberg lettuce (about 1/4 of a head) 
  • Alouette Crumbled Goat Cheese
  • 1 whole pomegranate
  • Marzetti Simply Dressed Pomegranate Vinaigrette
  • 1 small shallot
  • 1 small bag whole pecans
  • 1 tbs butter
  • Wishbone Salad Spritzers-Balsamic Breeze
  • 2 tbs brown sugar
Kitchen Tools
  • Cutting board
  • Sharp knife
  • Spatula
  • Skillet
  • Small bowl for pomegranate seed harvesting
  • Large Salad Bowl (make the salad in the serving bowl, keeps it neater that way....) 
  • Meat tenderizer/mallet
  • Fork
Tossing Your Salad
  • Melt butter in skillet over medium heat
  • Pound pecans, still in bag, with meat mallet, til partially crumbled. Doesn't have to be precise, just pound a few times on both sides to break up some nuts! 
  • Add crushed pecans to skillet and spray 5-7 times with Salad Spritzers Balsamic Breeze. 
  • Add brown sugar and stir to coat pecans evenly with dressing, butter and sugar. 
  • Let them go for about 1-3 minutes on medium, until sugar is completely melted. 
  • Spread the nuts around the pan, evenly, breaking up any large clumps, remove from heat and allow to cool completely. 

  • Add all greens to the salad bowl, removing any wilted or discolored bits as you find them. Packaged salads are already washed so you don't need to wash any of the greens. 

  • Cut off the ends of the shallot, peel and thinly slice the entire bulb, then break it up into smaller bits and sprinkle over the greens

  • Wash the pomegranate and cut off one end to reveal the seeds. 
  • Here's where the fun begins. There's a reason why pomegranate products are so 'spensive...it's a labor-intensive process to reveal all those juicy lil seeds whilst keeping all the pith at bay. So, what I did was to slice through a piece of the skin, from top to bottom, and peeled it away. From there, you can break off clumps of seeds. Remove seeds from pith into a bowl.....they fall away fairly easy, it just takes a bit of time and patience. Repeat this process till you have 1/3 to 1/2 cup of pomegranate seeds. Pick out any remaining pithy bits...then sprinkle the pomegranate seeds over the greens. 

  • Use a fork to crumble goat cheese into smaller pieces, unless you like huge bits of cheese, then leave it be. 
  • Sprinkle goat cheese liberally over the greens
  • Use a spatula or your fingers to remove pecans from the skillet, and sprinkle THOSE too all over the top of the salad. The finger method is a bet messy, if you must know. :) 
  • Chill for 10-15 minutes

Serve with Marzetti Simply Dressed Pomegranate Vinaigrette. Doesn't take much dressing at all. For appearance's sake, I did not "toss" anything, but left it all lay atop the greens...because the toppings are much weightier than the lettuce, they would all fall to the bottom and leave you with a mess of nothing but green. No fun there! Got excellent reviews from a table full of assorted picky eaters, so all in all, this year's salad surpise was a smashing success!  

Try it! Now! Or later.... 

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