Baby Greens with Pomegranate Seeds and Spiced Pecans
The gorgeous ruby red and bright leaf green color of this salad offers welcome relief for a mid-winter table. And the flavor is a fresh as it looks. Best of all are the health benefits, with pomegranate seeds, pecans, and baby greens all competing for the stellar health award.
In this delicious salad, pomegranate seeds add more than just their well-know anti-oxidants, but enhancement for breast and prostate health. Pecans are rich in vitamin E, so essential to our defenses against diseases such as cancer and heart disease. And baby greens promote long life because they are so rich in phytonutrients.
3 tablespoons unsalted butter
¼ cup light brown sugar (or one of Care2′s recommended natural sweeteners)
1 tablespoon water
1 ½ teaspoons chili powder
¾ teaspoon salt
½ teaspoon ground cumin
½ teaspoon dried oregano
¼ teaspoon ground black pepper
Pinch of cayenne pepper
4 cups pecans
1/3 cup extra virgin olive oil
1 tablespoon lemon juice
1 tablespoon thawed frozen orange juice concentrate
¼ teaspoon kosher salt
¼ teaspoon freshly ground pepper
¼ cup thinly sliced red onion
1 cup boiling water
3 oranges or grapefruit
8 cups baby greens
1 cup crumbled soft goat cheese
¼ cup pomegranate seeds
1. Preheat the oven to 300 degrees F.
2. Preheat the oven to 300 degrees F. Spray a baking sheet with nonstick spray or use a silicone pan liner. In a large sauté pan over medium heat, melt the butter. Add the sugar and stir gently until dissolved. Take off the heat and add the remaining ingredients. Stir until the nuts are well coated. Spread the mixture onto the prepared baking sheet and put into the oven. Cook for about 25 minutes, stirring often. The nuts need to be glazed and a rich brown color; cool completely. These will keep in an airtight container for about 10 days.
3. Whisk the oil, lemon juice, orange juice, salt and pepper in a bowl and set aside.
4. Put the onion slices in a strainer and pour the boiling water over them. Run them under cold water to refresh and dry them on a paper towel. This eliminates some of the strong onion flavor. Cut the peel and the pith from the oranges. Cut in half and slice into ¼-inch slices. Spread the baby greens out on a large platter, arrange the orange/grapefruit slices around the side. Sprinkle the top with the goat cheese and red onion. Top with the pecans and pomegranate seeds; drizzle with the dressing. Serve immediately.
Adapted from Culinary Concepts, by Judith Baigent (Gibbs Smith, 2007).