I absolutely love fruit but it takes a back burner in the winter. It’s cold outside, fruit is generally cold and I want warm foods like soup. When I do eat fruit it’s seasonal, like apples, pears, and some citrus. My repertoire broadens when adding it into smoothies but I don’t give it much thought to eat on its own.
Having said all of this I also find by this time of winter I’m regularly dehydrated. And as a consequence I begin to crave fruit again. Not like in the summer when if no other food existed I’d be happy. This is more like a desperate craving trying to extract any available moisture into my parched core.
I’ve made no secret of my love of my Spiralizer. I bought it last year with high hopes of creatively developing new, fresh recipes that would allure my family into eating produce in whimsical curls and ribbons. I’ve loved it so much I try to make up a new recipe every week. Winter squash has been a favorite. It’s deeply flavorful and roasts to a pasta-consistency in less than 10 minutes. Top it with anything you would a pasta and your nutrition benefits have gone up a notch while being completely satisfying.
This week I made an Apple-Pear Slaw with red and green grapes, pomegranate arils, walnuts, fresh mint and a light Grapeseed Oil-Apple Cider Vinegar Honey Poppy Seed Dressing. It is fantastic! I used a large Honeycrisp apple which has full flavor and a wonderful firm consistency (perfect for Spiralizing). A firm Bartlet pear and an Asian Pear also were turned into large curly cues, retaining a crunchy texture along with their pleasing shape. Tossed with the other ingredients and a crunchy, seasonal slaw is born. Little dressing is needed so it stays healthy and uses healthy fats in the grapeseed oil and walnuts.
When making the slaw it is not necessary to peel the apple or pears. In fact not peeling them leaves a bit of extra color to the spirals. Using the larger 1/4-inch 6mm noodle blade allows the spirals to retain their crunch and form. Tossing the slaw is most easily done with one's hands to ensure all the delicious ingredients are well mixed.
The dressing recipes makes more than enough for the slaw. I only used a few tablespoons for the slaw. It is a delicious, light dressing perfect for dressing greens or other salads. Store the dressing sealed in the refrigerator.
- 1 large, firm flavorful unpeeled Apple (I used Honeycrisp), rinsed and dried with stem removed
- 1 large firm unpeeled Bartlet Pear, rinsed and dried
- 1 large unpeeled Asian Pear, rinsed and dried
- 1 Lemon
- 1 cup mixed color Seedless Grapes, rinsed and cut in half vertically
- 1 cup Pomegranate Arils (seeds)
- 1 tablespoons fresh Mint Leaves, minced
- ¼ cup raw Walnuts, rough chopped
- 1/3 cup Grapeseed Oil
- 1/3 cup Apple Cider Vinegar
- 2 tablespoons Honey
- ½ teaspoon Dry Mustard
- 1 tablespoon Poppy Seeds
- Small pinch Kosher Salt and freshly ground Black Pepper
- Using the ¼-inch 6mm noodle blade, spiralize the apple. Place in a large mixing bowl or salad serving bowl. Note: to keep the apple and pear spirals from browning, squeeze a bit of fresh lemon juice on them and toss. Cover tightly once the slaw is prepared to prevent or slow oxidation of the apple and pears which causes browning.
- Cut one inch from the narrow top of the pear (directly underneath the stem). Place that end of the pear against the Spiralizer blade (not the crank side) and spiralize the pear. Add the spirals to the mixing bowl.
- Spiralize the Asian Pear and add to the mixing bowl. Note: to keep the apple and pear spirals from browning, squeeze a bit of fresh lemon juice on them and toss. Cover tightly once the slaw is prepared to prevent or slow oxidation of the apple and pears which causes browning.
- In a smaller bowl combine the grape halves, pomegranate arils, mint and walnuts. Toss together to fully combine. Add to the spiralized fruit and toss together (it may be easiest to use your hands instead of salad tossers). Seal with plastic wrap while you make the dressing.
- In a small bowl or a jar with lid, combine all the ingredients for the dressing. Whisk (if using a bowl) or seal and shake (for the jar) to fully combine.
- Drizzle a small amount of dressing (a few tablespoons) on the full salad before serving or on individual servings and served chilled. Note: there will be plenty of dressing leftover for other salads; store in the refrigerator sealed.