This salad was inspired by one I saw in a holiday magazine. I'm always up for a new and different salad but the original recipe had a lot more (unnecessary) sugar than this one does.
You make a type of seed and nut "brittle" to top the salad that is delicious! I've actually been snacking on it sans salad - a much needed sweet salty crunch.
With a few modifications I now will call this salad healthy. It is full of superfoods...
Brazil Nuts for a healthy thyroid.
Pumpkin Seeds for a healthy immune system and gorgeous skin.
Walnuts for heart and brain health.
Red Onion for a little liver detox.
Pomegranate seeds full of antioxidants for healthy cells...Plus they are super pretty!
I love the sweet crunch of the nuts and seeds with the mixed greens and I think you will too!
You will be a hit at your next holiday party or dinner with this dish - healthy and delicious! Who knew ;-)
Feel free to modify the nuts and seeds to whatever you have on hand. I chose the ones listed for their health benefits - but if you have some pistachios or pine nuts or cashews, have at it!
You will likely have more baked nuts and seeds than you will need for the salad, however they store well in an airtight container for up to two weeks - so you can use them as a topper for future salads or oatmeal or snack on them as is.
The nuts and seeds are full of healthy fats, antioxidants and protein.
Preheat the oven to 350 and line a rimmed baking sheet with parchment paper.
Combine the nuts and seeds in a large mixing bowl.
In a small saucepan combine 2 tbsp of olive oil, maple syrup, 1/2 tsp salt and paprika. Stir and cook on medium heat for a few minutes until it is hot and combined but not boiling.
Pour the warm mixture over the nuts and seeds and stir until they are well coated. Spread the mixture in a thin layer on the parchment paper lined baking sheet (see picture).
Bake for 10 minutes. Remove from the oven and stir. Bake for another 10 minutes. Remove from the oven and let cool. Break up the mixture into small clusters.
Place the greens, red onion and pear (optional) in a large salad bowl. Whisk together 1/4 cup olive oil, apple cider vinegar and a dash of fresh ground sea salt and pepper. Dress the salad to taste (you may not use all the dressing, store extra in the fridge). Top with some of the seed and nut clusters and pomegranate seeds right before serving.