Apple Cheddar Pistachio Salad with Creamy Shallot-Date Dressing

SERVES: 8

This recipe serves eight, but should you be interested in eating it on any other day of the year, you can halve or quarter it easily for weeknight ease. Any kind of toasted nut will work well, and you can skip a step by purchasing them pre-roasted and salted, or follow the toasting instructions below.

Active Time: 20 Mins

Total Time: 20 mins

apple-chedar

Produce

  • 1 small shallot
  • 1 ¼ lbs sturdy lettuces such as escarole, little gems, radicchio
  • 1 cup mint or parsley leaves
  • 1 Honeycrisp or 2 gala apples

Pantry

  • 2 ounces dates (2 large medjool)
  • 1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
  • ½ cup apple cider vinegar
  • ⅓ cup plus 1 tbsp olive oil
  • Kosher salt, freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 cup toasted pistachios, walnuts, almonds, or pecans

Dairy

  • 5 ounces extra sharp or aged cheddar cheese

1. Preheat the oven to 325°.

2. Make the creamy shallot date vin:

  • Pit 2 ounces dates.
  • Coarsely chop 1 small shallot.
  • Combine dates and shallots in a blender or food processor with 1 tablespoon Dijon mustard, ½ cup apple cider vinegar.
  • Blend until well combined but still chunky.
  • Add ⅓ cup olive oil, a big pinch of salt and freshly ground pepper and blend on until thick and emulsified.
  • Taste and adjust seasoning.

3. Toast the nuts if they’re not already:

  • Combine 1 cup nuts and 1 tbsp olive oil on a small rimmed baking sheet. Season with salt.
  • Roast the nuts until lightly golden brown all the way through (crack into them to test!).
  • Let cool then chop until about the size of lentils.

4. Prep the Salad

  • Wash and dry 1¼ lbs of sturdy lettuces. Tear the lettuces into large pieces.
  • Slice 1 Honeycrisp apple into wedges.
  • Cut or chunk 5 ounces sharp cheddar into bite sized pieces.

5. Assemble

  • Just before serving, combine the lettuces, apple, 1 cup mint leaves, cheddar, and chopped nuts in a large bowl.
  • Drizzle some of the vinaigrette over, and toss well to evenly coat, adding more as needed until all leaves are well coated. You may have some dressing left over. Lucky you!
  • Season the salad with flaky sea salt and black pepper, and toss once more to distribute. Serve.

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