Roasted Fruit Sparks Winter Salads
Recipe and photo courtesy of Robin Selden for Maria Selden Catering and Event Planning
Remember the first time you grilled those peak-of-season, local peaches and were blown away by how much sweeter and more nuanced they tasted? Now imagine roasting winter fruits that seem, well, less exciting. By a lot.
Get ready for another revelation.
Just when you thought you couldn’t bring yourself to face another lackluster winter salad, consider this: crisping chunks of raisin walnut bread yields sweet n’crunchy croutons. Ordinary winter fruits magically morph into golden salad toppings with a little high heat. Tossing simple greens with this zesty vinaigrette will have you wondering what you should be roasting next.
Let us know which variations you dream up! Toasted rye croutons? Roasted apples? Avocados? We want to know.
Roasted Winter Fruit Salad with Raisin Walnut Bread Croutons & Champagne Vinaigrette
This salad may be dairy or pareve (dairy free)
3 C 1-inch cubes Raisin Walnut Bread
1 C fresh Cranberries (thawed if frozen)
1 C Red Seedless Grapes
2 Bartlett Pears, cut into 8ths and cored
2 T butter or dairy free margarine, melted
2 T Lemon Juice, plus ¼ C (about 2 lemons total), plus ½ Lemon, zested
1 t Sugar
6 oz Arugula or Baby Field Greens
Champagne Vinaigrette Dressing
1 Shallot, finely minced
2 T Dijon Mustard
¼ C Champagne Vinegar
2 T fresh Lemon Juice
½ t Salt
½ t Freshly Ground Black Pepper
½ C Extra Virgin Olive Oil
2 T Chopped Parsley
Preheat the oven to 300 degrees. Place the raisin walnut bread cubes on a parchment lined baking sheet. Bake until dark golden brown and crispy on the outside, about 20 to 25 minutes. Remove from the oven and set aside. The croutons will continue to crisp up as they cool.
Increase the oven temperature to 425 degrees. Place the fruit in a large mixing bowl and drizzle with melted butter, 2 tablespoons lemon juice, and the sugar. Toss to coat and spread the fruit out in a single layer onto a parchment lined baking sheet. Bake until the pears are tender and the fruit is beginning to brown on the edges, about 25-30 minutes. Remove from the oven and set aside.
For the vinaigrette: Whisk together the shallot, mustard, vinegar, lemon juice, salt, and pepper in a large bowl. Slowly whisk in the olive oil until the dressing is emulsified. Sprinkle in chopped parsley.
To assemble the salad, place the greens in a large bowl. Drizzle with salad dressing, toss to coat. Plate greens and top with roasted fruit and croutons. Sprinkle lightly with sea salt and fresh cracked pepper.