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Spinach Salad with Nectarines and Spicy Pecans

Photography: Becky Luigart-Stayner; Styling: Jan Gautro
Yield 12 servings (serving size: 1 cup salad, 1 tablespoon prosciutto, and about 1 1/2 teaspoons pecans)
This recipe has variations galore. Use almonds or walnuts in place of pecans, and use bacon or ham in place of prosciutto. Substitute any kind of greens, including arugula, field mix, or romaine lettuce.

Ingredients

  • Pecans:
  • 1/4 cup powdered sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground allspice
  • 1/8 teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 1/8 teaspoon ground red pepper
  • 1/3 cup pecan halves
  • Cooking spray
  • Vinaigrette:
  • 3 tablespoons finely chopped shallots
  • 3 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
  • 1 teaspoon sugar
  • 2 teaspoons fresh lemon juice
  • 2 teaspoons extravirgin olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
  • 3/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • Salad:
  • 3/4 cup very thin slices prosciutto, coarsely chopped (about 2 ounces)
  • 2 (6-ounce) packages fresh baby spinach (about 12 cups)
  • 2 nectarines, each cut into 1/4-inch wedges (about 3/4 pound)

Nutrition Information

  • calories 75
  • caloriesfromfat 48 %
  • fat 4 g
  • satfat 0.6 g
  • monofat 2 g
  • polyfat 0.8 g
  • protein 2.7 g
  • carbohydrate 8.2 g
  • fiber 1.5 g
  • cholesterol 4 mg
  • iron 1.1 mg
  • sodium 369 mg
  • calcium 36 mg

How to Make It

  1. Preheat oven to 350°.

  2. To prepare pecans, combine first 5 ingredients in a small bowl. Rinse pecans with cold water; drain (do not allow pecans to dry). Add pecans to the sugar mixture, and toss well to coat. Arrange pecan mixture on a jelly roll pan coated with cooking spray. Bake at 350° for 10 minutes, stirring occasionally. Coarsely chop pecans. Set aside.

  3. To prepare vinaigrette, combine the shallots and next 7 ingredients (shallots through black pepper) in a small bowl, stirring with a whisk until blended.

  4. To prepare salad, heat a large nonstick skillet coated with cooking spray over medium-high heat. Add prosciutto; sauté 5 minutes or until crisp, and finely chop. Combine spinach, nectarines, and dressing in a large bowl; toss gently to coat. Sprinkle with the pecans and prosciutto.