Eating healthy in the winter months can sometimes be a bit difficult. If you’re anything like me, when it’s cold outside it seems that hearty comfort food type dishes seem to be the only thing that satisfies. With that in mind, I wanted to come up with a healthy salad that would curb that craving – and this is it. The salmon has a delicate flavor, but it’s still very hearty. The fennel and apple provide the perfect crisp and flavor and the blue cheese and walnuts add just enough fat to make this salad satisfying. The dressing is super flavorful and pulls the whole thing together.
When you’re craving a hearty flavorful dish, but are trying to eat healthier then this is the salad for you. It’s perfect for lunch but it’s substantial enough for a light dinner. And it’s delicious – a win-win.
(This recipe was originally published here on 01/14/2015)
- for the salad:
- sugar - 1/4 cup
- rice vinegar - 1/4 cup
- star anise, whole - 2
- cold water - 4 cups
- salmon filet, with skin - 1, 1 lb
- mixed field greens - 2 cups
- red delicious apples, sliced - 2
- walnuts - 1 cup, coarsely chopped
- blue cheese - 1 cup, crumbled
- fennel - 2 cups, very thinly sliced from 2 medium bulbs
- for the dressing:
- sherry vinegar - 2 tbsp
- dijon mustard - 1 tsp
- tarragon, finely chopped - 1 tbsp
- salt and pepper
- olive oil - 4 tbsp
make the dressing:
- Use a whisk or a food processor to combine the vinegar and mustard together well. Mix in the tarragon and salt and pepper, then slowly add the olive oil, whisking constantly until the dressing thickens, and set aside.
make the salad:
- Mix the sugar, vinegar, star anise and cold water in a large, deep skillet. Bring to a boil, stirring so the sugar dissolves then place the salmon in skin side up.
- Cover the skillet and remove it from heat. Allow the salmon to sit for 10 minutes before turning over with a slotted spoon.
- Cover again and let sit another 6 or 7 minutes. Use a slotted spatula to remove the salmon and allow to cool completely.
- Place an even amount of field greens on four plates. Top the greens with the apples and walnuts, then place a salmon fillet on each salad.
- Sprinkle the blue cheese and fennel over the top, then drizzle each salad with a generous serving of dressing.