As we pivot from Thanksgiving and turn toward the upcoming winter holidays, now seems like a good time to remember that salads can be beautiful, delicious, and an excellent supporting dish to your main courses throughout the winter months and especially during the holiday season. I like to make sure salads sit alongside main courses most days, though what my salads feature changes throughout the season. One of my favorite late fall-early winter salads features crisp apple, mildly bitter Swiss chard, tender spinach, and a sprinkle of dried cranberries, roasted pepitas, and candied pecans.
While you can drizzle this salad with a honey mustard dressing from a bottle, there's something downright lovely about making your own and knowing you aren't adding stuff no one wants to an otherwise healthy salad. In fact, I usually double or triple the dressing ingredients and store the extra in the refrigerator. Just pop it out of the fridge about a half hour before serving another salad and give the bottle a solid shake or three before drizzling some onto your favorite salads.
This salad pairs very well with chicken and pork dishes, creamy pasta dishes, and alongside nearly any sandwich. While making extra dressing and using that at a later time is highly recommended, I would suggest only making enough salad to have alongside your main dish in one sitting. This is not a salad that is well suited to be kept in the refrigerator and being enjoyed as leftovers. So make it fresh, eat it fresh, and make it again and again as desired. Keep your colder months bright and healthy with this pretty salad.
- 2 tablespoons Dijon mustard
- 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
- 2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
- 1 tablespoon honey
- 1 small garlic clove, grated or minced
- ¼ teaspoon sea salt, more to taste
- Freshly ground black pepper
- 2 cups chopped Swiss chard
- 3 cups chopped spinach
- 1 honeycrisp apple, cored and chopped
- 2 tablespoons pepitas
- 2 tablespoons dried cranberries
- ¼ cup candied pecans
In a small bowl, whisk together the mustard, olive oil, vinegar, honey, garlic, salt, and pepper; set aside.
In a serving bowl, combine the Swiss chard and spinach. Drizzle the dressing evenly over the greens and toss well to coat. Sprinkle the top of the dressed greens with the apple, pepitas, cranberries, and pecans. Serve immediately with any remaining dressing on the side.
- Yields: 4-6 servings
- Preparation Time: 10 minutes