It has literally been raining on my way home from work every day this week. I think my toes have constantly been cold and wet. And with the days getting shorter, it is also dark when I leave work. When I get home, I'm longing to cuddle up with a blanket on my couch and slurp hot soup, stew or chowder out of a bowl that is warming my hands. Of course, the chipotle cheddar ale soup is long gone and most days I'm craving dinner faster than it takes to make a hearty stew. I think it's time to whip out that crockpot; next week, we'll have something warm to eat, promise.
But for today, we'll have to turn to hot chocolate or coffee to warm our souls because we're eating a nice cold and crisp fall salad. Really though it encompasses just about everything autumn related- apples, pears, roasted pumpkin seeds and cranberries. Throw in some spinach leaves, red onion, celery, and feta cheese and you're set to go. Oh wait, don't forget the bacon crumbles.
I used a combo of poppy seed dressing and balsamic vinegar for dressing as suggested on the food blog that inspired this dish. The combination added enough creaminess but was still tangy enough to balance the sweetness of the fruit in the salad.
Fall Salad (inspired by Iowa Girl Eats)
2 cups spinach leaves, washed and coarsely chopped
2 thin slices of red onion, coarsely chopped
1/2 apple (whatever kind you like), coarsely chopped
1/2 pear (whatever kind you like), coarsely chopped
1/2 stalk celery, coarsely chopped
handful of dried cranberries
handful of roasted pumpkin seeds
1-2 tbsp feta cheese crumbles
2 slices of bacon, crisp cooked, drained and chopped
1 tbsp poppy seed dressing
1/2 tbsp balsamic vinegar
Combine everything through the bacon in large bowl and mix. Drizzle on the poppy seed dressing and balsamic vinegar and toss to coat everything.