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Candied Walnut, Pear, and Leafy Green Salad

Photo: Ellen Silverman; Styling: Toni Brogan
Yield 8 servings (serving size: about 1 cup)
The sweet, crunchy nuts sprinkled on this salad give it top-notch taste. The nuts are great on their own--make a double batch, and give some as a gift.

Ingredients

  • 1/3 cup sugar
  • 2/3 cup chopped walnuts, toasted
  • Cooking spray
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt, divided
  • 2 tablespoons white balsamic vinegar
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons Dijon mustard
  • 3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon capers, chopped
  • 4 cups torn green leaf lettuce
  • 4 cups chopped romaine lettuce
  • 4 cups chopped radicchio
  • 1 ripe red Anjou pear, thinly sliced
  • 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

Nutrition Information

  • calories 171
  • fat 11.6 g
  • satfat 1.3 g
  • monofat 4.6 g
  • polyfat 5.2 g
  • protein 2.7 g
  • carbohydrate 16.3 g
  • fiber 2.6 g
  • cholesterol 0.0 mg
  • iron 1 mg
  • sodium 177 mg
  • calcium 37 mg

How to Make It

  1. Place sugar in a small, heavy saucepan over medium-high heat; cook until sugar dissolves, stirring gently as needed to dissolve sugar evenly (about 1 minute). Continue cooking 1 minute or until golden (do not stir). Remove from heat; carefully stir in nuts to coat evenly. Spread nuts on a baking sheet coated with cooking spray; separate nuts quickly. Sprinkle with 1/4 teaspoon salt. Set aside until cool; break into small pieces.

  2. Combine vinegar and mustard, stirring with a whisk. Gradually add oil, stirring constantly with a whisk. Stir in capers.

  3. Combine lettuces and radicchio; top with pear and candied walnuts. Drizzle dressing evenly over salad; sprinkle with remaining 1/4 teaspoon salt and pepper. Toss gently to combine.

  4. Wine note: I favor a crisp white with almost any green salad, and Candied Walnut, Pear, and Leafy Green Salad is no exception. 2007 Pinon Vouvray Cuvée Tradition ($16) has a gorgeous nose of honey and lemon peel that resonates perfectly with the candied nuts and pears. --Gary Vaynerchuck