I am so happy that you have landed in my little corner of cyberspace. If you join me here, you will, hopefully, get to know a little about me. You will read my thoughts, my hopes and dreams, and see some of my favorite things. I hope you will visit often. I will try to update it regularly and hopefully you will see an improvement in the blog along the way. Thank you for stopping in to see me as I travel on this journey called "life"!

Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Spring Salad

I have been craving a salad made with fresh pears. While outside on the deck repotting plants this morning, my plan to have salad for lunch was born.  I have some of the cutest baby mesclun lettuce growing out there and in my fridge I had some organic baby spinach, romaine lettuce and pea shoots. My landlord gave me a few fresh parsnips so I cut those up and roasted those in the oven with olive oil and sea salt before I went out to work with my plants. I originally thought that they would make a nice snack since it was just a few of them. While dreaming up my salad, I thought....why not add the parsnips to the salad too?!

I knew that I had a fresh red pear.....some dried cranberries.....some walnuts that I could toast.....some of that wonderfully yummy NH herbed goat cheese that I've managed to develop an addiction for.  My lunch plans were assured.

After finishing my plants, it was time to search for a salad dressing recipe.  I was thinking something with that yummy Ben's NH Maple Syrup so I popped into Google "maple syrup salad dressing pears".  They were going to be the star of this show.....or so I thought.  I found a wonderful recipe at culinarycory.com and I'm all set.

So I tossed the greens together....

Baby Spinach
Mesclun Mix
Romaine Lettuce
Pea Shoots

And I mixed up the dressing, as follows....

Maple Dijon Vinaigrette
Adapted from culinarycory.com 
3/4 cup olive oil
1/4 cup cider vinegar
1/4 cup maple syrup
2 tbsp. Dijon mustard
1 tbsp. garlic, minced
pepper to taste

In a small mixing bowl, whisk all ingredients until well emulsified.  The dressing should be a light yellow color. Keep vinaigrette chilled in the refrigerator until ready to toss with the greens. 

Note:  This makes a good bit of dressing....enough for a large salad to serve 4 to 6.  I just spooned some out for my greens and I'm saving the rest in the fridge for a later salad.

I dressed the greens with some of the dressing and refrigerated the rest for later.  On top of the greens, I added the roasted parsnips, dried cranberries, a chopped red pear, a small handful of walnuts that I toasted in a dry skillet and that yummy goat cheese. 


You might note, as culinarycory did on his website, that you will probably want to treat your pears with fresh lemon juice until all of the cut sides are coated so that they don't turn brown.  I didn't do that, as I only made enough salad for one and I ate it right up.  No time to turn brown on my salad!

Thanks so much for stopping by to see me today.  It's a beautiful day in New Hampshire so I'm off, once again, to enjoy it.

Have a great day!

This post is being linked up to Let's do Brunch, Whatcha Makin' Wednesdays 
and Full Plate Thursday.


Miz Helen’s Country Cottage


  1. OK, that dressing sounds wonderful, and that salad...well it looks good enough to eat right off the screen. Happy Wednesday...

  2. This sounds so good. I can't wait to try your dressing!

  3. Almost looks too good to eat...notice I said "almost"....! {{hugs}}

  4. I absolutely love salads that are stuffed with so many fun ingredients! The worst in when a salad consists solely of lettuce and tomato...but with yours I get a bite full of something different every time!

  5. Wow that loils good- so funny we both posted a salad today- great minds think alike! I lOve lOve the addition of the pears and roasted parsnips. I haven't had parsnips in a really long time- you just gave me a new idea!

  6. What a wonderful salad. It really does speak to spring and lighter meals. It looks delicious. I hope you have a great day. Blessings...Mary

  7. Love your salad as well as dressing. I found that with homemade ones we can get lot of varieties and flavor.

  8. It all sounds so good! Funny, I'm not a fan of pears except in a salad. And roasted parsnips are so good, would never think to put it in a salad, that's a great idea!

  9. Hi sweet friend! I haven't been by lately...life has been crazy busy and there's no end in sight since I'll be gone for a long weekend and then my grandchildren will be here next week. Life is good though so I'm not complaining!

    I've had fun tonight catching up on your posts I've missed and have loved them all.


  10. This dressing sound fabulous, I am trying to stick to a strick diet after this past holiday this will help do the trick! Thanks for stopping by... your blog is lovely!

  11. love the flavor combinations of the sweet dried fruit and the tangy goat's cheese. excellent!

    also very intrigued by the maple/dijon combination. i'm taking you up on this offer... the flavor profiles are too interesting to miss!


  12. Mmm, me too. The closer it gets to warmer weather, I bring out all my salad recipes. This ones a saver for sure. Love it!

  13. Candace, I am so glad you stopped by Lark's Country Heart. I see you have some great recipes on here...I would like to invite you to join in on "Made it on Monday"...a WEEKLY RECIPE LINK PARTY I host on my blog.

    *Link ups are every WED.-SAT.*

    I hope to see you & your recipes soon. ;)


  14. Great looking salad!!! And that dressing sounds amazing. I'm going to have to try that...tonight!

    Lots of yummy love,
    Alex aka Ma What's For Dinner

  15. It looks beautiful, and I bet it is fantastic. Who would've thought - maple dijon!! What an interesting idea. I've got to try this. :-)

  16. the dressing sounds tremendous

  17. This sounds delicious! We spent the weekend in Vermont and just loved all the maple syrup! I have to try this! I hope you are doing great my friend! Have a good day!

    Mama Hen

  18. lovely salad and great idea to add pears :-)

  19. Your spring salad looks so light and refreshing! Can't wait to try it!

  20. Your salad looks really yummy! It is still to cold here to enjoy salad. '
    I am weird but I enjoy salads a whole lot more when the weather is warm.
    I am waiting for the sun!
    Thanks for the recipe though :-D

  21. Your salad looks lovely, Candace and I look forward to following your blog!

  22. Your salad looks so perfect for the season! I absolutely enjoy this kind of light meal :)

  23. The salad looks perfect Candace and I followed your example and posted a salad too!

  24. Your salad is perfection, love the pears, so refreshing, and the maple-Dijon vinaigrette is on my next salad for sure!

  25. This salad looks so delicious and fresh, and I love the flavors that you used! Wonderful dressing, too. Thanks for sharing! I'm so happy to have found your beautiful blog and am going to explore more of your recipes now! :)

  26. Hi Candace,
    I am so excited that it is Salad Time again. Your salad looks awesome and I love your Vinaigrette. I sure hope that your computer is working ok again, I hate it when that happens. Thank you so much for sharing with Full Plate Thursday and hope to see you next week!

  27. Thanks for linking this to Let's Do Brunch.

    I love maple syrup and the idea of using it as a component of a vinaigrette is pleasing and tempting me.

  28. Oh my - this sounds so good!! That dressing sounds amazing. I've been craving salads lately too!

  29. I've bookmarked this recipe - what a delicious sounding vinaigrette! Thank you for sharing your lovely salad with Let's Do Brunch - Hope to see you again at the linky this week - it will be up tomorrow :)


Thanks so much for visiting me today! I hope you have enjoyed your time here and that you will return again. Please leave me a comment to let me know that you have stopped by! I respond to each and every comment by email, if possible, and by returning a visit to your blog. Have a great day!