I spent almost the first 25 years of my life hating salads! Ok don’t give me that look!! At my parents’ home, we only ate the regular Egyptian Baladi salad … ONLY … & when mum wanted to make things creative she added grated Rumi cheese to it; not even parmesan! So, I kinda got turned off by salads in general!
Until my cooking passion started to grow & I became an addict of international cooking programs & books; only then I realized my mistake!
Creativity in salad goes my beyond anyone’s wildest imagination! Come to think of it; any edible ingredient available on all land can be added to your salad bowl! I became obsessed with experimenting & trying salads with different flavors, textures, fruits, nuts, beef, chocolate … the list goes on.
Back to our Apple Walnut Arugula Salad with Balsamic Vinaigrette! This one here is so special to my heart – actually it’s the most special of all salads! It’s the first “edible” salad recipe I came up with 7 years ago & since then it’s a staple in every dinner I host or go to.
It is DELICIOUS; I am not biased .. Take my word on that! It is sweet, tangy, creamy & peppery … in every single bite!
I am already writing this post while I am preparing a huge batch for my in-laws’ early Christmas barbecue dinner.
6 reasons why this salad should be special to you too:
– Has just everything you need in one bowl; greens, cheese, nuts & fruits
– A REAL DEAL crowd pleaser
– Has a creamy balsamic vinaigrette which is way way better than store bought (& so easy to prepare)
– No fancy shopping list required – most ingredients will be in your pantry
– A healthy salad packed with everything your body needs
– Can be prepared in advance & just tossed together before your meal so great great for hosting guests
Let me go finish preparing my salad & below is the recipe :)
APPLE WALNUT ARUGULA SALAD WITH BALSAMIC VINAIGRETTE
For the Salad:
- 1 medium iceberg lettuce
- 1 small bunch of Arugula leaves only
- 125 gm cheddar cheese cubed
- 1/2 cup raw walnuts roughly chopped into medium sized pieces
- 1 small yellow apple unpeeled & finely diced
For the Balsamic Vinaigrette
- 1/4 cup balsamic vinegar
- 1 large garlic clove minced
- 1 tsp yellow mustard
- 2 tbsp brown sugar
- 3/4 cup olive oil
- To prepare the Balsamic Vinaigrette: In a bowl, put all the vinaigrette ingredients except for the olive oil & salt.
- Whisk together until the sugar is dissolved & the mustard is mixed in
- Whisking constantly, slowly add the olive oil in a steady slow drizzle until the dressing is emulsified.
- Season with salt to taste.
- To prepare the salad: Cut the iceberg lettuce into medium sized chunks.
- Toss the lettuce with the arugula together & spread (don’t pile) on a plate.
- Arrange the apple, walnut & cheese on top.
- Drizzle with the balsamic Vinaigrette (don’t toss) to your taste.
This salad can be prepared in advance. Just toss the cut apples with some lemon juice & place in an air tight container in the fridge to prevent them from turning black.
- Use yellow apples; as red apples are too sweet & green ones are too sour for the recipe.
I prefer the taste of raw walnuts in this salad; you can add roasted walnuts if you want.
- The dressing stays in the fridge for up to a week; just whisk it before using in case it starts to separate.
This recipe can be doubled or even quadrupled.