AUTUMN SALAD: WARM APPLE, BACON AND HAZELNUT SALAD

Thursday, September 25, 2014

It's officially Autumn.  
Every gust of wind seems to bring a flurry of golden leaves with it and I am reminded that the snow is coming, just not yet snow, I am not quite ready for you!  

So salads in Autumn, are they on your agenda or is a salad a summer only kinda deal?  May I change your mind if said salad contains crispy bacon, crisp apples, toasted hazelnuts and a warm dressing? 


This salad is about as Autumn as it's gonna get and it's pretty darn good, so really what are you waiting for?  



 Just for the record that tasty looking bacon - we made that!  Yup, that's right, we be makin bacon!  This particular bacon was made using loin and infused with brown sugar and nigella seeds.  Such a satisfying process and a million times better than anything you will ever buy in a store.  Recipe for this coming soon, but I have a few more experiments to do before its ready to share.  

Also, its worth a mention that the apples used in this amazing salad were rescued.  I am part of a group called OPERATION FRUIT RESCUE EDMONTON- sounds like it should be in a movie staring Tom Cruise!  The concept is simple, we rescue urban fruit, donate a percentage to a worthy local cause and share the rest with the owner of the tree and the pickers.  I think that once you pick an apple straight from the tree and sink your teeth into it a store bought apple will never be quite the same again!

WARM APPLE, BACON AND HAZELNUT SALAD

INGREDIENTS

  • 2 apples
  • juice of ½ lemon
  • 50g hazelnuts
  • 8 slices bacon, chopped into small pieces
  • 4 handfuls salad leaves & other salad goodies- cucumber, tomatoes etc, just add what you fancy.
For the dressing
  • 4 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 tbsp cider vinegar
  • 1 tsp Dijon mustard
  • Handful of chopped parsley

METHOD

  1. Whisk all the dressing ingredients together with seasoning in a small bowl, then set aside till later. 
  2. Core the apples and cut into thin matchsticks, then toss in the lemon juice to stop them going brown.
  3. Put a pan over a medium heat and toast the hazelnuts for a few mins until golden. Tip on a board and roughly chop.
  4. Place the pan back on the heat then fry the bacon until crisp. Remove the bacon, take the pan off the heat and throw the dressing into the pan to mix with all that hot bacon fat.  Give it a quick swirl around and quickly get to the dressing phase.
  5. To assemble the salad, put all the green stuff and the apples together in a bowl with most of the dressing and toss together. Pile the salad onto 4 plates and top with the chopped bacon. Scatter over the hazelnuts, drizzle with the remaining dressing and serve.


So who is up for an Autumn salad now?  


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