As I was searching for healthier side dishes to make this Thanksgiving I came across this amazing salad. It does take a little bit of time to prepare but is completely worth it (and you can do alot of it ahead of time). The flavor from the sauteed pancetta really makes the dressing unbelievable. And my grocery store had prepackaged diced pancetta at the deli…huge help! See the **notes below on some changes I made.
2 cups pecans
1/2 cup confectioners’ sugar
1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper
1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
6 ounces thickly sliced pancetta, finely diced
1/4 cup white wine vinegar
2 tablespoons caper brine (from a jar of capers)
3 tablespoons pure maple syrup
Freshly ground black pepper
2 Granny Smith apples, cut into matchsticks
1 large head radicchio, shredded
One 8-ounce bunch kale—stems discarded, leaves finely shredded
3 tablespoons snipped chives
1 tablespoon chopped tarragon
2 ounces shaved pecorino
** Changes- I used one small head of radicchio and it was plenty, and used Parmesan cheese instead of pecorino.
Preheat the oven to 350°. In a bowl, cover the pecans with water. Transfer to a sieve and shake out the water. In another bowl, whisk the confectioners’ sugar, cayenne and 1 1/2 teaspoons of salt. Add the pecans and toss. Transfer to a sieve and shake off the excess coating. Arrange the pecans on a parchment paper–lined baking sheet and bake for 10 to 12 minutes, until the sugar is lightly caramelized and the pecans are golden.
In a skillet, heat the oil with the pancetta and cook over moderate heat, stirring frequently, until the pancetta is browned, 6 minutes. Strain the pan drippings into a large bowl; whisk in the vinegar, caper brine and maple syrup and season the dressing with salt and black pepper. Add the apples, radicchio, kale, chives, tarragon and pecorino and toss. Mound the salad on plates, garnish with the pecans and pancetta and serve.
** I made the candied pecans well in advance. Also- I just chopped my kale and radicchio (no shredding). I prepared my apples ahead of time by chopping them and putting them in a container filled with cold water and a squeeze of lemon juice, then stick in in the fridge until you are ready.
So good, I’m making it again for dinner tomorrow night! Enjoy.
Today is my last day of maternity leave. I’ve been home since June so it seems like forever I’ve been away from the classroom. My sweet Olive is 3 months old now and will be going to the babysitter with Lola starting Monday. Today I am snuggling extra close and holding Olive during her nap instead of putting her down. And Lola has told me she is going to take care of her little sis so I can rest easy. Precious girls.
It has been a couple years since we have made it back to JMU. We finally planned a weekend back at our home away from home and couldn’t wait to get there. Harrisonburg is beautiful in the fall- there is nothing better than being back there tailgating with family for their last game of the season.
Lola loved every second of the weekend. She seemed to think eating in the back of Papa’s truck was one of the coolest things in the world. Then watching all the glitz at the game from dancers to fireworks she was having a ball. Olive Mae was also enjoying herself- either bouncing on one of our laps or snuggling in her blanket.
I wish we could have stayed longer. It’s such a great feeling being back there…so many amazing memories. Alan and I had a story to reminice about everywhere we went. Oh and we also informed Lola this would be where she and Olive Mae will attend in the future (but only if Alan and I can buy a house in the area to keep an eye on them)- not sure if they would like that rule- ha.
So glad its Friday! Just positing a few family photos of the girls this week! Did I mention I have the two sweetest little girls on this earth? Lola is such a precious and kind little soul and Olive Mae seriously smiles just about all day. Such blessings. Hope you have a wonderful weekend!
We had a great Halloween last week. Lola was Minnie Mouse (whom she adores)! She was the cutest little mouse around. Olive Mae mostly relaxed in the stroller or in Nana’s arms wearing her little pumpkin outfit. We went to a couple houses to trick-or-treat then came back home to have a little bonfire in the driveway and hand out more candy.
My favorite weekends are the ones where we start out with no plans at all. This weekend had absolutely perfect fall weather.
Friday night we went to the local high school football game (our neighbor plays) and Lola loves him! So she had a ball watching him, the cheerleaders, and the band play! Saturday, one of our favorite spots to get a treat, Sweetly Smitten, celebrated their one year anniversary with a fun Fall event for customers and kids. We enjoyed lots of gelato and cupcakes! Sunday we played outside and worked on decorating some pumpkins. Lola got sticker happy and Olive laid on the blanket just smiling non-stop. She has become such a smily, giggly little baby!
I also made this Chili recipe yesterday! Its a delicious one if you are looking And just had to throw in a few pictures of Lola helping me grocery shop because they’re just so darn cute.
I received another precious gift recently, from my good friend Shawn, and I just had to share this one. Im sure by now you have seen a million nurseries or kids bedrooms with big, blocky letters that spell their name, right? While they can be cute, they are just not my cup of tea. Shawn and I have the same taste in just about everything, so when she presented me with these letters I could not have been more excited. They are so beautiful and sweet and exactly what Olive’s room needed.
Each letter is on a different piece of fabric. All with lovely colors and different patterns that work wonderfully together. They would also be cute for a party banner or maybe in another special place in your home.
In case you would like these for yourself, Shawn picked them up in Roanoke, VA at RSVP or you can visit Meri Meri to order them directly. Happy Shopping!
Do you know someone who just had a baby, getting married perhaps, or just want a little treasure for your home? You must visit Paloma’s Nest. My best friend, Lauren, recently sent us a sweet plate with Olive’s name engraved on it. When Lola was born she sent us the same dish. This is perhaps one of my absolute favorite things in Lola and Olive’s room. They are not just gifts…they are keepsakes.
They look beautiful simply laying on a table, hanging on the wall, sitting in a stand, etc. Some of my other favorites are there Keepsake Ornaments and the Family Plaque. There is a little something for everyone. We will treasure these always. Thank you Lauren.
Can you believe it is already October? Due to the 80 degree weather today, one would think differently. However, the leaves are starting to fall a lot more now and the temperature is supposed to turn colder in the coming … Continue reading →