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fall salad...whats it missing?

chelleyd01 Oct 20, 2007 01:24 PM

So I am always in charge of the ridiculously huge salads for the family events. Tomorrow is one of the cousins birthdays so I am, of course, breaking out my $60 huge oblong salad bowl and doing the salad. I'm tired of the classic cuke, tomato, olive, green onion, cheese and crouton gig so I am opting for a fall salad of mixed greens, gala apple chips, gorgonzola, candied pecans and applewood smoked bacon with an apple viniagrette.

What's it missing? Anything? And there is generally no theme of food to these parties because the palates go from far and near. We are doing Italian beef sandwiches, mac and cheese, mexican caviar, spinach dip, veggie tray, hot pepper tray, hummus, baba, taco dip, salad, potato salad, fruit tray...it always just runs the gammet.

  1. rose water Oct 21, 2007 06:25 PM

    Can you tell us more about how you make the apple chips? They sound great.

    3 Replies
    1. re: rose water
      chelleyd01 Oct 21, 2007 06:58 PM

      sure...I washed the apples, sliced them thin on my mandoline, dropped them into a bowl of apple juice/water, used the cap of my apple cider vinegar to cut the center seeds out and laid them on a foil lined cookie sheet I spritzed with Pam. I slid them into a 200 degree oven and flipped them after 30 minutes....let them go another 30 minutes or so til they were chewy/crispy. I loosened them from the foil immediately from the oven because the sugar caused the first batch to stick. They held up just fine in the dressed salad.

      1. re: chelleyd01
        chef chicklet Oct 23, 2007 09:23 AM

        wonder if a silpat sheet would work?

        1. re: chef chicklet
          chelleyd01 Oct 23, 2007 10:18 AM

          I'm sure...as would parchment. I just happen to have heavy duty foil on hand.

    2. chelleyd01 Oct 21, 2007 05:44 PM

      just got home from the par-tay (side note: it is OCTOBER and it was clear, sunny and 84 degrees in Northeast Ohio today...we are so getting our asses handed to us when winter hits!)

      Made the salad like this:

      spring mix
      candied walnuts
      crumbled gorgonzola
      diced crispy bacon
      gala apple chips I made myself
      apple cider/juice/garlic/O Oil/hot sauce/salt/pepper/brown sugar/dijon mustard dressing

      nothing...I mean not a scrap of lettuce left. Thanks everyone!

      1. k
        karykat Oct 21, 2007 04:44 PM

        The raisin or pomagranite seed ideas sound good. Or dried cranberries. With some toasted walnuts?

        1. bolivianita Oct 21, 2007 11:28 AM

          Hearts of Palm

          1. e
            emilief Oct 21, 2007 11:14 AM

            Roasted beets/

            1. KaimukiMan Oct 21, 2007 10:38 AM

              A little late I know, but I like to put raisins in sometimes. I prefer to use golden raisins, I think they look better, just don't like black specs in my salad. Pine nuts are good too. Sometimes I add an asian pear (crunchier), as a personal preference I avoid celery.

              1. DockPotato Oct 21, 2007 10:02 AM

                Ummm, would you consider coarsely chopped green cabbage for the greens?

                1. coll Oct 21, 2007 04:57 AM


                  1. chef chicklet Oct 21, 2007 03:55 AM

                    I'd probably use grape tomatoes rather than any other tomato for the sweetness and one bite no slicing deal. I see you have cheese and then gorgonzola, what is the other cheese? The only think I see missing is a fresh herb which will pop the salad. And if it were me since I love radicchio, I'd make slivers to replace the apple chips that might come out soggy. I adore salads with so many ingredients! oops just read you apple chip note, let me know how they hold up. I love them but was worried what they would do in a salad on a buffet table...

                    1. chelleyd01 Oct 20, 2007 06:03 PM

                      well, I just slid the trays of apples into the oven. The first batch I made yesterday was eaten! There is just something about that crispy-sweet-tart-appley chip that is very hard to resist.

                      I think the shaved red onion will be the way to go. I tinkered with the apple dressing quite a bit today and I am letting it merry overnight to get the full effect before more tinkering! I have an odd feeling that I may have to even do one more batch of apple chips before the party tomorrow night! Sigh!

                      1. s
                        sueatmo Oct 20, 2007 04:15 PM

                        Your salad sounds wonderful! The only thing I would add is slivered pieces of sweet onion, such as Vidalias or Walla Wallas. I find that sweet onion works very well with cheese and fruit in a salad.

                        1. b
                          BelleJo Oct 20, 2007 03:04 PM

                          Michael Chiarello has a gorgeous autumn salad recipe on Food Network which includes dried fruits like apricots and cherries and croutons made from panettone.

                          1. f
                            Fuser Oct 20, 2007 02:34 PM

                            Pomegranate seeds would be great and they look like little jewels.

                            1. orangewasabi Oct 20, 2007 02:14 PM

                              raw sunflower seeds

                              1. southernitalian Oct 20, 2007 02:03 PM

                                Toasted pine nuts!

                                1. chowser Oct 20, 2007 01:44 PM

                                  It sounds great to me. I'd probably use fresh apples since they're in season rather than apple chips (though I've never had apple chips). Pears, as mcel suggested, also would be good with what you've planned. Maybe some roasted cauliflower, too, or some color w/ persimmons.

                                  1. Katie Nell Oct 20, 2007 01:41 PM

                                    I'd add green onions or red onions for a little bite.

                                    1 Reply
                                    1. re: Katie Nell
                                      piccola Oct 20, 2007 05:46 PM

                                      Ditto. I'm leaning towards red onion.

                                    2. mcel215 Oct 20, 2007 01:39 PM

                                      I love fresh pears and slices of roasted butternut squash, with bacon, cheese, arugala, and nuts.

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