Crisp baby spinach, spring mix lettuces, tart apples, sweet raisins, crunchy almonds and the ultimate honey cider salad dressing all combined to create a fantastic fall salad. I’ve already made this salad three times over the past month. The dressing is wonderful and the combination of flavors with the rest of the salad makes this one of my all-time favorites.
I was determined to serve this with my Thanksgiving dinner this year. So, I’ve been playing with ways to make the salad in advance and still keep the apples fresh. (Like most people I know, making many of the Thanksgiving dishes in advance keeps me the happiest!) Everything I tried initially, changed the flavor of the salad too much. Luckily, apple cider vinegar did the trick and after 36 hours in the fridge, the salad still had apples that were crisp, white and lovely.
Carver’s Salad with Honey Cider Dressing
- 3-4 oz baby spinach leaves this was 2 large handfuls
- 3-4 oz spring mix lettuces this was 2 large handfuls
- 1 - 1 1/2 cups raisins
- 3/4 - 1 cup sliced almonds toasted
- 3 granny smith apples * very thinly sliced, I cut medium size apples into about 40 slices each
- HONEY CIDER DRESSING:
- 3 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
- 3 tablespoons honey
- 6 tablespoons mayonnaise
- 1 tablespoon dijon mustard
- 1 1/2 tablespoons finely minced yellow onion
- 1 1/2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley
- 3/4 cup light flavor olive oil
- In a small glass bowl, warm the honey and the vinegar in the microwave. Stir together until the honey dissolves. Place the other dressing ingredients together into the pitcher of the blender. Add the honey mixture and blend until thoroughly combined. Chill in the refrigerator until ready to serve.
- In a skillet over medium heat, toast the almonds until they are fragrant and browned. Remove from the heat and set aside to cool. In a large bowl or on a platter, combine the spinach, lettuces, raisins, almonds and apple slices. Drizzle with dressing just before serving.
- *If you would like to prepare this in advance, I recommend treating the apples to avoid browning. As you are slicing them, place them directly into a small bowl filled with 2 cups of cold water and 1/4 cup apple cider vinegar. Soak them for about 5 minutes and then drain. Blot dry with a cloth or paper towels.