Winter is just around the corner, and it's more important than ever that we get our daily dose of vitamins and nutrients from fresh greens and vegetables. The cooler climate lends well to cooked veggies incorporated into soups and stews, puréed with butter and cream, or roasted and baked until crispy. But don't forget a salad at this time of year. A seasonal winter salad is not only fresh and palate cleansing, it can be an elegant accompaniment to a meal, or, when served with cheese and salumi, an easy rustic dinner.
Winter Green Salad with Pomegranate and Prosciutto is pretty and hefty; it can easily play a decorative role on a holdiay dinner table or star in a light weeknight dinner. It's loaded with favorite seasonal greens: ruby white-streaked radicchio, curly spiky frisée, and cool upright endives. Each of these hardy greens are bitter and assertive, so mix them with nutty spinach and peppery arugula leaves to balance the flavors and texture. Crunchy sweet pomegranate seeds add a jeweled touch and complement salty crisped prosciutto chards, while a warm, syrupy balsamic vinaigrette sweetly binds the salad's robust flavors. Rich, festive and satisfying - with this salad there is no excuse for not eating your vegetables!
Winter Green Salad with Pomegranate, Prosciutto and Warm Balsamic Vinaigrette
6 slices prosciutto
2 garlic cloves, smashed
1/2 cup extra-virgin olive oil
1/4 cup balsamic vinegar
1 tablespoon brown sugar
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1 small head radicchio
1 Belgian endive
1 small head frisée
2-3 cups arugula
2-3 cups spinach
1/3 cup pomegranate seeds
Arrange prosciutto slices in one layer on baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Bake in preheated 300 F. (150 C.) oven 15 minutes. Turn off oven without removing prosciutto for another 15 minutes. Remove from oven and cool. Break prosciutto into 3/4" pieces. (Can be prepared 4 hours in advance. Store at room temperature in an airtight container.)
Heat oil and garlic in a small sauce pan over medium-low heat until garlic is soft and just beginning to color. (Do not let it darken, or it will become bitter.) Remove and discard garlic. Carefully add balsamic vinegar and sugar, whisking to combine well. Simmer until dressing has a syrupy consistency, 1-2 minutes, stirring frequently. Remove from heat. Whisk in salt and freshly ground black pepper.
Combine mixed greens in a large bowl. Pour dressing over and toss to combine. Arrange on salad plates. Scatter pomegranate seeds and prosciutto over salad.
You might also like these salads from TasteFood:
Bacon, Avocado, Tomato Salad with Mustard VInaigrette