It’s been cold and rainy all week. In New York I knew how to deal with the rain, had no choice. But there I had proper rain boots, an underground train system to transport me through the dry belly of the city, more than one umbrella. Here, in Be’er Sheva, my wardrobe is now suited to the desert I live in. When it rains it takes all my energy to get out of pajamas, let alone leave the house. But therein lies the beauty of working from home – I don’t have to! And on days – more like weeks – like this, I crave warm, comforting dishes that I can curl up in. Yes, I literally mean curl up in. The other night, freezing in my poorly insulated apartment, I told my husband I wanted to make a stew just to bathe in it. I was only half kidding.
So where does this salad fit into the picture? Well, after eating the kind of heavy comfort food that this weather inspires, I do a 180 and crave light, nutritious salads to balance the rich, wintery meals. I want to be reminded that brighter, warmer weather is around the corner. I want to be transported, at least for a moment, to a sunnier place. I still need my salads to be filling (not like in the sticky heat of summer when watermelon seems the only appropriate food). This salad with fruit, nuts, cheese, and a tangy pomegranate vinaigrette does the trick. I originally developed it for my Sukkot menu over at the Jew and the Carrot, but I find that it’s still just as appropriate and seasonal now, at the beginning of February. Feel free to swap whatever fruits and veggies are available near you now and suit your taste.
I love everything about this salad. I love the different textures here, the play between savory and sweet, and the mix of fresh and dried fruits. It sings of this region with its dates and pomegranates, both in different forms here (pomegranate seeds in the salad and juice in the vinaigrette; dried dates in the mix and date honey in the dressing).Even the dressing feels like something special. It’s slightly sweet, but mostly tangy in the way a good vinaigrette should be. I hope you enjoy it as much as I did!
- 9 ounces mixed greens
- 1 pear, sliced
- ½ cup pitted and sliced Medjool dates
- ¼ cups pomegranate seeds
- ½ cups coarsely chopped walnuts
- ½cups dried cranberries
- 3 ounces goat cheese, crumbled
- ½ cup pomegranate juice
- 2 tablespoons red wine vinegar
- 1-2 teaspoons Dijon mustard
- 1 tablespoon date honey (substitute regular honey)
- ½ cup extra virgin olive oil
- Put all the ingredients in a salad bowl.
- Toss with pomegranate vinaigrette (recipe below) or serve on the side.
- Combine all the ingredients in a food processor, or vigorously whisk together by hand.
- Taste and adjust as necessary.
Linked up at Tastetastic Thursday over at A Little Nosh