Apple Cheddar Pecan Salad

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I’m not a huge salad fan. I like restaurant salads, but homemade salads aren’t really my thing. They often taste too earthy and they never seem to have the correct amount of dressing. There are a few exceptions… anything with arugula, Kale Caesar Salad and this Apple Cheddar Pecan Salad. This salad is my go to for the fall, I love the refreshing fresh crunch the apples give. I’ve been making this salad for years and everyone who has tried it loves it.

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The homemade dressing on this salad really ties together the salad and really boosts the fall flavour. It has apple cider and pure maple syrup as two of the ingredients. I love to blend my dressings up in my magic bullet to emulsify the olive oil, but you can of course just use a whisk.

I like to serve this salad on the side of marinated chicken, or add a grilled chicken breast on top and take it to work for lunch. If you give it a try it will soon become your favourite fall salad.

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Cheddar Apple Pecan Salad

Yields: 6-8 Servings

Ingredients:

Salad:

  • 8 Cups Baby Greens
  • 1 Apple, thinly sliced
  • 1/4 Cup of Pecans
  • 1/4 Cup of Cheddar Cheese, shredded

Dressing:

  • 1/4 Cup Olive Oil
  • 2 Tbsp Apple Cider Vinegar
  • 1 Tbsp Dijon Mustard
  • 2 Tsp Pure Maple Syrup
  • Pinch of Salt & Pepper

Directions:

In a blender, or small dish add olive oil, apple cider vinegar, dijon mustard, maple syrup, salt and pepper. Blend or whisk until the dressing comes together and emulsifies.

Add baby greens, apples, pecans and cheese to a large bowl. Drizzle dressing over salad and toss to coat. Serve immediately.

 

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Dutch Apple Pie Bars with Salted Caramel

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We all know I love pie, and dutch apple pie is one of my favourites. What makes apple pie different from dutch apple pie it that instead of a top crust their is a crumble topping. It’s the best of both worlds. Now these bars a essentially a portable dutch apple pie. They are also drizzled with salted caramel, so you know they are good.

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These bars have four layers, shortbread crust, apple filling, crumble topping and caramel drizzle. I know that seems like a lot of work, but the ingredients and simple and so is the method. The tricky part is the caramel sauce. Now I like to make homemade salted caramel, it simple is the best. If you have the time please do yourself a favour and make the sauce from scratch. You wont be disappointed.

If you’re short on time, or just aren’t ready to try your hand at homemade caramel sauce you can use store bought. Buy the best quality caramel sauce you can find. Drizzle that on top of your bars and sprinkle some flaky sea salt on top. They will be almost as good.

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These are perfect to serve at an end of summer barbecue or on a fall dessert buffet. These bars with a cup of tea after your thanksgiving dinner… with a side of pumpkin pie of course.

Yields: 9-16 Bars

Ingredients:

Shortbread Crust:

  • 1/2 Cup Unsalted Butter, melted
  • 1/4 Cup White Sugar
  • 1 Teaspoon Vanilla Extract
  • 1/4 Teaspoon Salt
  • 1 Cup All Purpose Flour

Apple Filling:

  • 2 Apples, peeled and thinly sliced
  • 2 Tablespoons All Purpose Flour
  • 2 Tablespoons White Sugar
  • 1 Teaspoon Cinnamon

Streusel:

  • 1/2 Cup Rolled Oats
  • 1/3 Cup packed Brown Sugar
  • 1/4 Teaspoon Cinnamon
  • 1/4 Cup All Purpose Flour
  • 1/4 Cup Unsalted Butter, cold and cubed

Homemade Salted Caramel Sauce

Directions:

Preheat the oven to 300°F. Line the bottom and sides of an 8-inch square baking pan with parchment paper, leaving enough overhang on all sides. Set aside.

Make the crust: In a small bowl stir together the melted butter, granulated sugar, vanilla, and salt. Add the flour and stir until everything is combined. Press the mixture into the prepared baking pan. Bake for 15 minutes.

Make the apple filling:Combine the sliced apples, flour, granulated sugar and cinnamon together in a large bowl until all of the apples are evenly coated. Set aside.

Make the streusel: Whisk the oats, brown sugar, cinnamon, and flour together in a medium bowl. Cut in the chilled butter with your hands until the mixture resembles coarse crumbs. Set aside.

Remove the crust from the oven, and turn the oven up to 350°F (177°C). Layer the apples on top of the warm crust. Sprinkle the apple layer with streusel and bake for 30–35 minutes or until the streusel is golden brown.

Remove from the oven and allow to cool for at least 20 minutes at room temperature. Lift the bars out of the pan using the tabs of the parchment. Cut the bars into your desired serving size. I normally cut them into 12 squares, but 9 or 16 will also work. Once cut, drizzle the bars with the salted caramel sauce. The bars can be served warm, room temperature or cold.

Adapted from Sally’s Baking Addiction