With the holidays around the corner and many meals to plan, start your holiday luncheon or dinner with a fresh and flavorful fall salad and a delicious dressing. This creamy Maple Walnut Vinaigrette is overflowing with flavors including pureed walnuts, sweet maple syrup, mustard and apple cider vinegar.
Throw together a quick fall or winter salad with a variety of your favorite salad components. Some ideas to include in your salad are as follows:
- Lettuce: Arugula or Spinach
- Onion: Red Onion or Shallot
- Cheese: Gorgonzola (bleu cheese-like, crumbly) or Goat Cheese (subtle, creamy)
- Fresh Fruit: Honey-Crisp Apple Slices, Pear Slices or Pomegranate Seeds
- Dried Fruit: Cranberries
- Crunchy Element: Walnuts, Caramelized Pecans or Toasted Pepita Seeds (Shelled Pumpkin Seeds)
Have fun with your combinations and top with this beautiful Maple Walnut Vinaigrette. Your first course is sure to be a show stopper!
Your cheese selection can vary depending on your crowd's appetite for stronger versus more subtle cheese selections. While gorgonzola has a stronger more potent smell and taste, it represents a unique blend with the sweetness of the sweet maple walnut dressing that is worth the risk. If you are unsure of your guests' preferences, select a more subtle cheese such as goat cheese or offer a selection of cheese options.
If transporting this salad for a holiday meal, impress your hosts by presenting the dressing in mason jar with a simple ribbon. A simple salad dressing will appear that much more special and will save the host from having to arrange an additional serving dish.
MAPLE WALNUT VINAIGRETTE SALAD DRESSING
- Yields approximately 12 ounces
- 1/2 cup pure maple syrup
- 1/2 cup walnuts
- 1/4 cup cider vinegar
- 1 teaspoon kosher salt
- 1/2 teaspoon ground white pepper
- 1 teaspoon ground dry mustard
- 1/8 teaspoon garlic powder
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 2 tablespoons canola oil
- Combine all ingredients except the oils in a food processor or blender. Blend until well combined and walnuts are pureed.
- With food processor or blender running, pour olive oil and canola oil in a slow steady stream through the feed tube.
- Transfer to jar or other airtight container and chill in fridge. Bring to room temperature before serving.
Recipe courtesy of The Yummy Life.