This is a unique and delicious salad tossed with a warm maple-bacon dressing. Topped with crunchy, sugar-coated pecans, it combines the savory taste of bacon with sweet pears and creamy blue cheese. This is a great salad to pair with your favorite entrée, or eat on its own for a light lunch or dinner.
For the salad:
- 1-2 cups Brussels sprouts, trimmed and thinly sliced
- 2 cups spinach, chopped
- 1 cup arugula, chopped
- 4 slices bacon, cooked and chopped (save the bacon drippings for the dressing)
- 1 ripe pear, chopped
- 2/3 cup blue cheese crumbles
For the Maple-Candied Pecans:
- ½ cup raw pecans
- 1 teaspoon olive oil
- 1 tablespoon pure maple syrup
- ½ teaspoon dried oregano
- Pinch ground cinnamon
- Pinch salt
For the Warm Maple-Bacon Dressing:
- ¼ cup liquid bacon drippings
- ¼ cup apple cider vinegar
- 1 tablespoon + 1 teaspoon pure maple syrup
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- 1/8 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- ¼ teaspoon salt, or to taste
Prepare the warm maple-bacon dressing:
- Cook the bacon on a skillet over medium heat until cooked. Chop slices into small pieces and set aside. Reserve ¼ cup of the bacon drippings in a measuring cup, and discard any remaining.
- Add the remaining ingredients to the bacon drippings and whisk well until combined. Set aside.
Note: *Serve dressing warm. If it cools before you serve the salad, reheat it in a small saucepan or cover and heat in the microwave.
Prepare the candied pecans:
- In a small skillet, add pecans, olive oil, maple syrup, oregano, cinnamon and salt and heat over medium heat for 5 to 8 minutes. Stir consistently, until the nuts have become toasted and sticky. (Watch the nuts carefully, so they don’t burn.)
Prepare the salad:
- Rinse the Brussels sprouts. Chop off the rough ends, and slice them thinly from the tip to the tail. Chop the spinach and arugula.
- Add all the ingredients for the salad in a large bowl. Pour the desired amount of maple-bacon dressing over the salad, and toss well.
*This recipe is adapted from The Roasted Root.