Monday, December 1, 2014

Holiday Salad

Hope you had a wonderful holiday weekend.
We enjoyed a nice day with our church family
and a restful weekend since hubby had Friday off.

Our Thanksgiving dinner was wonderful.
I love sharing the cooking with the other ladies in the church.
We enjoyed feeding 6 college students along with our own families.

Below you will find my recipe experiment of Thanksgiving Day.
It was my tribute to healthy living (though most of our meal was very sensible).
This is a beautiful and tasty salad.  
I am going to buy some cranberries to make this again in December.

Cranberry Waldorf Salad

1 can full-fat coconut milk

12 ounces fresh cranberries
16 dried apricots
1 pound seedless grapes, cut in half
2 medium apples, cut into bite-sized pieces
1/2 cup pecan halves
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
**This requires a bit of forethought: place a can of coconut milk in the refrigerator, ideally overnight, but 3-4 hours will do. Also, this salad works best if you do the prep, let it sit overnight, then assemble shortly before eating. Trust me; it will be worth it!
1. Preheat the oven to 350 F. Put your mixing bowl and beater in the freezer.
2. Wash the cranberries and set a few aside for garnish. Place the rest in the bowl of a food processor with the dried apricots and grind them until the mixture has the consistency of relish. (It’s OK! Go ahead… sneak a little bite. It’s tangy and delicious!)
3. In a large bowl, toss the cranberry-apricot relish with the cut apples and grapes. Cover tightly and place in the refrigerator so they can get to know each other. Forget about them until the next day.
4. Meanwhile, spread the pecans on a baking sheet in a single layer and toast for 5-7 minutes until golden. Keep an eye on them; they can burn quickly. When they’re cool, chop the pecans and set aside – be sure to save a few unchopped for garnish. Resist the urge to eat them immediately. If you’re feeling lazy, you can use untoasted pecans; it will be fine.
1. When you’re ready to assemble the salad, take your can of coconut milk out of the fridge — don’t shake it — and put it in the freezer for 10 minutes, then…
2. It’s time to make the whipped cream! Remove the mixing bowl and beater from the freezer. Carefully open the can of coconut milk without shaking it, and scoop the thick, coconut cream into the chilled mixing bowl (toss the liquid that’s left over). Add the vanilla extract and beat the mixture on the highest speed of your mixer until it looks like whipped cream. This takes about 5-7 minutes.
3. When the cream is done, place the chopped pecans and fruit relish in a large bowl. Gently fold in the whipped cream and garnish with whole cranberries and nuts.

This weeks menu:
Sunday: Last of the Leftovers
Monday: Pork chops
Tuesday: Italian Sausage
Wednesday: Tilapia
Thursday:  Fajitas
Friday: Chicken Breasts
Saturday:  Taco Salad

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