So, I have been trying to meal plan here and there. Or at least have a general idea of what I want to make for the week before heading to the grocery store and just grabbing random stuff and throwing it into my basket. I decided last week would be "salad" week. Now befor you go and think I was eating only salad greens I want you to think again. I mean look at that picture above, that is not your average salad or 'rabbit food' now is it?
For inspiration and recipe ideas I headed over to Tasty Kitchen (If you haven't been there you should check it out. It sort of reminds me of Ravelry, only for the kitchen nerds instead of for the yarn/fiber nerds). I stumbled on this recipe and it reminded me of a salad I had a a local eatery earlier in April, sp I added it to the list. Plus there was steak involved so I knew Daddy-O would be game.
Let's just say MrO and I have been on a bit of a strawberry kick the past couple of weeks (I think I actually over did it and my tummy was not so happy with me for all those little seeds). Of course when I saw the berries on sale at the store I tossed them into the basket and knew they would be used up in some way or another- they fit in perfectly with this salad, adding just the right sweet to the savory of this salad.
I was a little unsure about making the candied walnuts, but I have to say I was worried about nothing, this was so easy and I could see adding a few other seasoning to them in the future (maybe some spicy goodness?) So don’t let this part of the recipe scare you!
I had this salad prepped and on the table in about 20-30minutes. MrO loved the steak,the 'bob-itties'(strawberries) and the avocado and Daddy-O and I loved the entire yummy mess and felt satisfied and full after one big plate full.
I am sharing my adapted version of this recipe from the original one I found via dagny21 on Tasty Kitchen... (I hope that is the right way to credit someone for a recipe?!) Just to give credit where credit is due, I copied and pasted their instructions with only a few additions of my own- I don’t want anyone thinking I am pirating things from others out there. Thank you dagny21 for sharing your yummy recipe!
1 whole Steak, Not Huge
1-1/2 cup Walnuts Halves or pieces, raw
1/2 cups White Sugar
1/2 bags (about 6 Oz. Bag) Salad Mix, or your favorite lettuce (we used romaine because that looked good in the store when I was shopping)
1/4 cups Crumbled Blue Cheese
1/2 English cucumber, sliced into bite size pieces
6-12 fresh strawberries, sliced into bite size pieces
1 avocado, sliced into bite size pieces
Italian salad dressing to taste (I used Newman's Own)
Preheat the oven to 350F. Lay out the walnuts on a baking sheet and cook for 5 minutes. Remove from the oven and put in a bowl. Lay a piece of parchment or waxed paper out on the pan.
Pour 1/2 cup sugar in a pan over medium heat. Allow melting, stirring once it really starts melting. Keep cooking and melting until all sugar is dissolved and the liquid is an amber color. Quickly pour in the walnuts and stir to coat. As soon as they are coated, dump them out onto the parchment paper and quickly separate the pieces. Once separated, I like to let them sit for at least 30 minutes, or even make them a day or two ahead. Once thoroughly cool, place about 2/3 of the walnuts in a bag for another use, and set aside the remaining 1/3 for your salad.
Cook the steak. We grilled ours (because that is how we cook most of our meat, even in the winter when there is snow on the ground) with a bit of salt and pepper on it to medium rare. While it is resting, prepare the salad. Just pour your salad greens onto a salad plate, top with the crumbled blue cheese, and sprinkle with the walnuts and chopped fruit/veggies. Slice the steak into thin strips and place on top of the salad. Drizzle with dressing to taste.
Enjoy and pretend you are eating at a sweet, but slightly pertinacious eatery on CalAve in Reno, NV.