Wednesday, September 17, 2014

Shredded Spinach Salad with Pear Vinaigrette

The threesome of  shredded zucchini, and carrots always makes me think of being in college.  Before instagram (gasp) and before the craze of mason jar salads, we used to make our salad and put it in tupperware.  Nowadays, the USC cafeteria is pretty much a small Wholefoods but when I was a student, a cinema major who spent hours upon hours in the editing lab, foley stage, sound mixing, etc., I had limited selection.  My options were premade cucumber avocado sushi or froyo (yes, I was only vegetarian in college).  So, I had to start making my own food for the first time in my life.  Salads are so easy to pack, they keep well, and you can eat them pretty much anywhere.  My go to salad was always spinach, shredded apple/carrot/zucchini with a little bit of olive oil, lemon juice and salt and pepper.  The dressing was light so the spinach stayed crisp and with shredded veggies, I could eat in class and not draw attention with loud crunching.  A love of this blissful threesome was born and I am now a shredded spinach salad devotee.
Last weekend, a friend invited me to their orchard to pick some gorgeous pears! There were so many to choose but picking fruit is hard work! The best ones are always hard to reach!
These gorgeous and local beauties were perfectly ripe and quite a few of them didn't survive the trip home! With the pears that I managed to not gobble up on the ride home, I saved for this recipe.  Shredded Spinach Salad with Creamy Pear Vinaigrette is a favorite and is one of my most used recipes for late summer and early autumn.  The dressing is tart, creamy and sweet all at the same time and pairs beautifully with the earthy flavor of spinach.  If I were still in college, this would be a mason jar salad every week!  For now, it will grace my deck while I sunbathe and blog.
Shredded Spinach Salad Ingredients:
1 carrot, shredded
1 apple, shredded (if your apples are organic, do not peel them because the skin is loaded with nutrition)
1/2 zucchini or soft yellow squash, shredded
3 cups spinach, stems removed
1 Tbsp. cashew halves to garnish
Creamy Pear Vinaigrette Ingredients:
1/2 - 3/4 cup pear, peeled, cored, diced
1/4 cup raw macadamia nuts or raw cashews
1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
3 Tbsp. champagne vinegar or apple cider vinegar to keep it raw
pinch of Himalayan salt
Add all ingredients to a blender and process until smooth and creamy.  To plate your salad, you can either lay out your ingredients so that you may first eat with eyes and size up all the goodness you are about to enjoy (pictured at the top) or you can toss the salad (pictured below) and serve.  Either way, I hope this tart and creamy salad will soon become a staple in your home as it is mine! Happy eating!
Thank you for visiting! I hope you've found some delicious foodspiration while on the VV blogosphere and I hope you'll visit again soon!

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