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Apple Walnut Salad with Cranberry Dressing

Thank you all SO MUCH for your sweet comments on our surprise announcement Christmas Eve, you all made me smile on a really crappy day 🙂

——-

If you are feeling anything like me, you don’t want to look at another cookie, pie or dessert by now. As I said, I did ALL of the baking for the holidays, so I had cookies, cakes and pies coming out the wazoo. I did manage to sneak in a few healthier desserts such as my Cashew Kream Blackberry Torte, which my mom said was her favorite of all the treats. I tried to use agave as opposed to regular white sugar in a lot of things, my apple cake is a “lighter” recipe, and I even managed to make a few batches of cookies using whole wheat pastry flour. I do not deem any of these  “health foods,” however, I believe they are better than many of the store bought desserts, and even most of the things in traditional recipe books. I was going to give you all a recap of everything, but it may be best to spare you from looking at another batch of cookies or a pie in the blogger world 😉

Something that I do think could be considered a health food that I made, and want to share with you all was this delicious salad….perfect for an edible holiday centerpiece:

Apple Walnut Salad with Cranberry Dressing

**measurements will vary depending on how big of a salad you make, I just eyeballed a lot of it

Ingredients:

Field Greens or Spring Mix Salad

1-3 Organic Non-tart Apples, peeled and diced

Raw Walnuts, chopped

1/2 Cup Balsamic Vinegar

1/2 Cup Olive Oil

1/4 Cup Organic Fresh Cranberries

Agave Nectar, to coat walnuts

Himalayan Sea Salt, to taste

Fresh Ground Black Pepper, to taste

Goats Cheese, warmed  (optional)

for the dressing:

Place the balsamic vinegar, olive oil, and cranberries in your Vitamix or Food processor and blend on high. Then, whisk in a little black pepper to taste. If you do not like the dressing to be ‘seedy’ you can run it through a sieve (I used my Vitamix for the dressing was pretty smooth it didn’t need to be strained). Place the dressing in an air tight container and place in the fridge until it’s ready for use. I like my dressing a little on the cool side, if you do too then make it ahead of time.

**If you like your dressing a little sweeter you can add a squirt or two of agave before blending.

for the walnuts:

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Place the walnuts in a mixing bowl and coat with agave and mix it up. Place walnuts on a baking sheet and toast them for about 5-10 minutes, keep an eye on them and make sure the do not get too brown or burn. When they are finished, sprinkle with a little sea salt and let cool.

to warm the goats cheese:

Preheat the oven to 325 degrees. Slice the cheese  into discs and then mold the discs into semi-circles. Place on a baking sheet with parchment paper and bake for about 5-6 minutes just to soften it. Do this right before you serve the salad for best results.

Apples:

Peel and slice the apples last, unless you want to peel them under water and soak in lemon water to prevent browning. I placed the apples in some dressing as I sliced them and coated them to prevent them from turning brown (I used red delicious and they brown the quickest!).

To assemble:

Wash and dry the greens and place them on a large platter. After preparing all the ingredients in the steps above, place the walnuts, apples and goats cheese evenly over the greens. If you want to add the dressing, do so before adding the goats cheese, otherwise you can just toss the apples in the dressing and serve it on the side.

This was delicious! A perfect winter salad 🙂

What was your favorite thing you ate over the holidays?

————————-

Cabin Fever

Yesterday morning, I woke up  to this:

…and some sad news about my grandmothers passing. Michael and I spent some time at my moms once we got the cars dug out.  I wanted to keep this post light and not get into it too much. All I am going to say is that although it is very sad to say goodbye, we are at ease that she will no longer be suffering, and that she is now with my grandfather. I have a special plan to honor both of their memories once our little girl is born.

———

I am really looking forward to getting in my gym today. It’s been about 5 days since I have gotten a really good exercise session in,  between the eating, and the stress and the hibernating I feel like I have been doing, it should be a great workout for baby and me. Boy, do we  need it.

Enjoy the rest of your day….

xxoo

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32 Comments

  • Reply susan

    Sorry to hear about your grandmother’s passing. Hope you’re all doing okay.

    It seems like you have the snow that we had! It was crazy here, traffic was crazy and it was so icy out but it was nice to have a white Christmas. It has all melted now.

    December 28, 2010 at 9:04 am
    • Reply laury

      Thank you, Susan. It’s been an awful week. No white Christmas here, a white day after though, lol.

      December 28, 2010 at 4:57 pm
  • Reply Dani @ Body By Nature

    I LOVE apple-walnut salad! The cranberry dressing sounds fantastic!

    So sorry to hear about your Grandma, thinking of you.

    December 28, 2010 at 9:33 am
    • Reply laury

      thank you

      December 28, 2010 at 4:56 pm
  • Reply Jennifer @ Evolving Well

    My sincerest condolences, Laury. I totally understand how that goes as my grandmom died a few days after new years 2010. It sounds like you were close to her and when people I’ve been close to have passed, I always remind myself that they live on through me in my memories and actions.

    Take care of yourself and kudos on the beautiful salad!

    December 28, 2010 at 9:35 am
    • Reply laury

      Thanks, Jen. She is in a better place…she has not been herself for a few years now and had no quality of life. I am going to continue to honor the good memories 🙂
      xxoo

      December 28, 2010 at 4:56 pm
  • Reply Keri

    Wow, what a busy weekend you have had. I’m sorry about your grandmother and I’m sure you came up with a wonderful way to honor her. Looks like we got about the same amount of snow. I am ecstatic to get out and hit the gym today!

    December 28, 2010 at 9:39 am
    • Reply laury

      Thanks a lot, Keri

      December 28, 2010 at 4:55 pm
  • Reply Nicole@makinggoodchoices

    I am so sorry for the passing of your grandmother. Grandmothers are truly special people.
    On a lighter note, I need to make that salad, I am in need of a good one!

    December 28, 2010 at 9:51 am
    • Reply laury

      Thanks, Nicole….they are.

      December 28, 2010 at 5:01 pm
  • Reply erica @ fashionmeetsfood

    Seems like you’ve been a busy be. I absolutely love this recipe and I am going to go pick up everything for this salad and make it tonight.

    xo

    December 28, 2010 at 9:52 am
  • Reply christina

    love this salad! and yesssssss i’m still so excited for you!!

    December 28, 2010 at 10:29 am
  • Reply thehealthyapron

    So sorry to hear about your Grandmother. *hugs*

    I have also felt like I can’t look at any more desserts (for now)! It was quite the weekend and I am ready to get back in to a normal routine! thank you for bringing us a delicious looking salad recipe! After the holidays I love to eat as fresh as possible! LOoks great!

    December 28, 2010 at 10:42 am
    • Reply laury

      Thanks for the hugs 🙂

      December 28, 2010 at 4:55 pm
  • Reply Courtney F

    Oh Laury, congrats on the baby girl! Our baby girl is so much fun! Plus she has her daddy wrapped up tight!!

    December 28, 2010 at 11:39 am
  • Reply Morgan

    I MISSED the Christmas Eve post!!! CONGRATS! Little girls are so much fun! I have 2 and I love it! The cake idea was SO cute! And your salad looks amazing, the kind of food I love!

    December 28, 2010 at 12:44 pm
  • Reply Melissa

    I’m so sorry to hear about your Grandmother:( Mine is also very ill and it’s so hard to see. Lots of prayers for your family!!

    Love the edible holiday centerpiece too..great idea!

    December 28, 2010 at 12:58 pm
    • Reply laury

      Thank you so much, Melissa….we appreciate that.

      December 28, 2010 at 4:54 pm
  • Reply Lori

    Ah, healthy green stuff! Just what I NEEDED after all the delicious-yet-sweet-and-notsohealthy foods! 😉

    December 28, 2010 at 2:04 pm
  • Reply La.

    I’m sorry! But your snow looks amazing! We still don’t have any.

    December 28, 2010 at 4:11 pm
  • Reply Angela @ Eat Spin Run Repeat

    I hear ya on the cravings for healthy eats and the gym, Laury! I was really starting to feel that way yesterday so got my bootay to the gym and am SO happy now to be back home eating my own food! Can’t get enough veggies it seems!

    December 28, 2010 at 5:09 pm
  • Reply Lexie

    I’m so sorry about your grandmother, dear.

    Also, I definitely need more vegetables in my life. Bring em on.

    December 28, 2010 at 5:26 pm
  • Reply Katie

    Nothing like a good exercise session to clear the mind. I’m thinking of you. Hugs!

    December 28, 2010 at 7:25 pm
  • Reply Allison

    Aww im so sorry about your grandma:( My 90 year old grandpop spent the past month in the hospital and even though he is out now, we know it cant be for much longer:(:(

    and sneeky sneeky about keeping the gender under wraps!!! I cant wait to have girls:):)

    December 28, 2010 at 7:40 pm
  • Reply salah@myhealthiestlifestye

    MMMM that salad sounds amazing!!!!

    December 28, 2010 at 8:57 pm
  • Reply Krista (kristastes)

    Sorry about your Grandmom, Laury 🙁

    December 28, 2010 at 9:54 pm
  • Reply Groggy Little Munchkin

    […] I also had stuff to make a simple field greens salad with my Cranberry Balsamic Dressing–yum […]

    December 29, 2010 at 8:59 pm
  • Reply Dana

    Thanks again for the salad idea! Ed loved it and said he will make it again :-).

    January 4, 2011 at 11:21 am
    • Reply laury

      So glad you guys liked it!!!! If I lived closer to you I would of made you bring me some 😉

      January 4, 2011 at 7:28 pm
  • Reply Holiday Roundup Part 1

    […] am also making my Apple Cranberry Walnut Salad for Chrisma-Hanukkah dinner at my house Friday […]

    December 20, 2011 at 1:38 am
  • Reply The 5 Best Foods For the Flu. | The Healthy Apron

    […] good recipe: Apple Walnut Salad with Cranberry Dressing from Laury at The Fitness Dish! Photo by Laury at The Fitness […]

    January 29, 2013 at 9:32 am
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