SPINACH SALAD WITH BOSC PEARS, CRANBERRIES, RED ONION AND TOASTED HAZELNUTS
1/2 cup extra-virgin olive oil
2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
2 teaspoons whole-grain mustard
1 teaspoon sugar
1 teaspoon kosher or sea salt
Freshly ground pepper 1 cup thinly sliced red onion
1/3 cup sweetened dried cranberries
8 cups lightly packed fresh baby spinach leaves, stemmed if needed
2 firm but ripe Bosc pears (do not peel), quartered lengthwise, cored, and cut into long, thin slices
2/3 cup hazelnuts, toasted and chopped
In a small jar with a tight-fitting lid, prepare dressing, combining olive oil with vinegar, mustard, sugar, salt and pepper. Put the lid on and shake to combine the ingredients well. Check for taste and add seasonings as preferred.
In a medium bowl, place the onions and cover with cold water. Set aside for half hour. Drain and use paper towels to dry. Toss cranberries with 2 tablespoons of the dressing in a small bowl. Set aside to soften for about 20 minutes.
Meanwhile, put spinach, onions and pears in a large bowl. Shake the rest of the dressing and pour over the salad. Toss to combine. Divide salad among 8 individual plates and top with cranberries and hazelnuts. Serve.
Makes 8 servings.