Out-of-This-World Company Salad

Wheat-free * Dairy-free * Gluten-free * Vegetarian * Vegan * Parve * Paleo ~~        

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What is company salad?  Salad that is a little too bothersome to make for just myself (too many ingredients, too much prep time, or too expensive) but is perfect to impress company.  So  who did I want to impress with this salad?

Let’s take a step back.  Those of you who know me well may want to sit down before reading on…I went out of town this weekend.  Shocking, I know.  It’s only taken me ten years to leave the city and visit my friend Lorraine and her husband Pete at their home on one of the finger lakes in upstate New York.

I got there Friday night and the visit was timed so I could attend the Howard Day Parade, an annual event that Lorraine, as town librarian, participates in.  It was a short but sweet parade, a bunch of tractors, vintage cars, the library group and a float from the Howard Historical Society.

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The next event was a dance recital followed by cake in the library.  It was fun meeting the library staff and other of Lorraine’s friends.  Following the recital was the annual “chicken lunch” served in a local hall (we took ours home to eat).

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Then Pete drove us to a wonderful farm stand they frequent.  The tomatoes were divine, we bought beautiful wax beans, sweet-sweet blueberries and I can’t remember what else.

Being a good guest, I brought them NYC bagels and a brisket (I think a good brisket is really hard to find).  So Saturday night I was the cook.  In addition to the brisket we had fresh local corn, Roasted Green Beans with Tomatoes and Balsamic Vinegar (that I posted 2 weeks ago) and Company Salad.

When I started to prepare the dinner we discovered that the wax beans (I was using the yellow beans instead of the green beans) had either been left at the farm stand or lost somewhere on the way home.  Pete insisted on going back to the farm stand to get more beans for us.

Lucky for me Lorraine has a home filled with lots of healthy goodies.  She had a pile of beets she had roasted before I came, avocados that were ripe, 2 oranges (though I used just one of them), a few lovely bing cherries, and a box of organic salad greens.  Of course she had lots of other things I could also have used but I was really good about editing myself.

The pistachios were the only thing I wanted that wasn’t in the house so we called Pete and asked if he would pick up the nuts while he was getting the beans.

Dinner was delicious but the star of the show was the out-of-this-world salad.  Hope you love it as much when you make it!
Out-of-This-World Company Salad

You can make all kinds of substitutions for the ingredients in this salad:  any kind of nut; grapefruit instead of orange, raspberries instead of cherries (though I really like the cherries) or whatever you have on hand.

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Dressing:

2 tablespoons olive oil

1 tablespoon Dijon mustard

1 tablespoon white wine vinegar

1 teaspoon honey

1/2 teaspoon balsamic vinegar

1 small clove garlic, minced

Salt and pepper to taste

Salad:

3 to 4  lightly packed cup of lettuce

1 1/2 cups diced cooked beets (preferable roasted)

1 cup diced avocado

1/2 cup orange supremes  or canned   mandarin oranges

1/2 cup pitted and quartered fresh cherries

1/3 cup chopped pistachios

Prepare the dressing by stirring together the oil, mustard, wine vinegar, honey, balsamic vinegar, garlic, salt, and pepper; set aside.

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Place the lettuce on a serving platter.  Top with diced beets.

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Top with diced avocado.

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Top with orange segments and arrange the cherries around the platter

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Sprinkle with pistachios

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Serve with the dressing on the side.

Serves:  4 to 6

 

 

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