As Spring approaches, one thing I start to crave is big salads that pack a lot of flavor. Here is one of my favorite winter salads that for you all to enjoy for this week’s Flashback Friday. I will be the first to admit as much as I LOVE salad, it’s really all about the mix’-in’s, toppers and how BIG I can make it. I mean, who doesn’t love creamy feta cheese, crisp salty bacon and toasted, sweet pecans on crunchy salad. But, there is just something about combining all these flavors with this colorful balsamic, pear, carrot, cabbage salad that makes this salad out of this world. I honestly never knew salad could be this good until now. I am pretty sure I dreamed about having this salad again all night after we made it lol.
I think there are a few things that really “make” this salad one you will make over and over again.
A little of the REAL DEAL cheese goes a long way.
You could save on calories/fat by using a low fat or fat free feta, but, sometimes that rich, creamy, salty, melt in your mouth cheese is needed.
Where you can SAVE on CALORIES & FAT is by using center cut bacon.
You get 3 slices of Oscar Meyer Center Cut bacon for the same points+ value as 1 slice of the real deal. You won’t miss the flavor or the fat.
I didn’t use turkey bacon because I wanted to have that rich bacon flavor throughout the salad. I infused the shallots with all that bacon goodness and drained them before adding them to the dressing.
Have fun with FLAVORED Vinegars!!!
I love Balsamic vinegar because it is both sweet and tart. We decided to use this PastaMore White Balsamic with Pears to play off the pear that we used in the salad…..it really just added another layer of deliciousness.
Last, but, not least, make this salad because I am pretty sure you will fall in love with it…it is by far one of the best salads I’ve made in a long time that will get repeated again and again.
CRUNCHY FETA, BACON & PECAN SALAD (print it!)
- 1 medium head red cabbage, finely shredded
- 2 cup shredded carrots
- 1 yellow bell pepper, seeded and thinly sliced
- 1 large pear, cored and thinly sliced
- 5 slices center cut bacon, cooked and roughly chopped, grease reserved
- 1/2 cup white balsamic vinegar
- 2 Tbsp. olive oil
- 1 shallot, finely chopped
- 1/2 cup dry roasted chopped pecans
- 1/3 cup dried cranberries
- 2 oz. feta cheese
- Sea salt & black pepper to taste
1. Combine cabbage through pear in a large bowl and toss. After cooking the bacon, add the shallot to the bacon grease. Cook for 4 minutes or until softened and slightly browned. Remove the shallot from the pan and drain on a paper towel.
2. Whisk together the cooked shallot, balsamic and olive oil in a small bowl and pour over cabbage mixture. Marinate the salad for 20 minutes by chilling it in the fridge.
3. Just before serving, add feta cheese, bacon, cranberries and pecans. Stir just until combined and season with salt & pepper to taste.
Makes 8 servings, 1 1/4 cups each, 4 points+ or 6 SmartPoints each
Nutritional information per serving based on 8 servings calculated at caloriecount.com
HERE ARE THE OTHER EUPHRATES FETA – UP RECIPES I MADE LAST YEAR:
I have been thinking about this recipe ever since we received a big head of organic red cabbage we received in our Farm Fresh To You Farm Box. This is one of my favorite recipe series from the archives that I thought I’d share since I am taking tonight off. You do not even have to be a stinky cheese lover to enjoy Euphrates Feta…it really is creamy, salty and delicious (coming from a non-stinky cheese lover).