Frisee With Pears, Goat Cheese, And Salted Pecans -Recipe #49 - Stirring The Pot

My friend and I had a long conversation yesterday about what we were serving for Thanksgiving. The two major dilemmas are not having enough oven space and too many things needing your attention at once. After at least one hour on the phone, we both decided that a great Thanksgiving salad was going to be part of our Thanksgiving table this year. Why not?

Maybe a green salad isn't a traditional side dish, but it is an easy and beautiful addition to any Thanksgiving table. A salad can be made the night before and doesn't require any oven or stovetop space the next day. Better yet, a salad requires no attention while you're busy cooking other things. Salads are beautiful and light and are a welcome dish at any party I've thrown. For all of these reasons, my friend and I both decided that we were definitely making a salad for Thanksgiving!!

Can you see where I'm going with this? This recipe from Stirring the Pot would be a perfect salad for any Holiday table. It is beautiful, easy, colorful, healthy and absolutely delicious!!

Frisee with Pears, Goat Cheese, and Salted Pecans -adapted from Stirring the Pot by T Flo
1 cup creme fraiche ** I used Greek yogurt
2 tablespoons Dijon mustard
1/2 lemon, juice only
1 tablespoon sugar
1 shallot, minced
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper

2 medium ripe Bosc pears **I used red Bartlet pears for the red color
8 cups frisee lettuce **I couldn't find any at Whole Foods so I used mixed baby greens
3/4 cup salted pecan halves, toasted
3/4 cup crumbled goat cheese

In a small bowl combine creme fraiche (or greek yogurt), mustard, lemon juice, and sugar. Fold in shallot and season with salt and pepper. Cover and set aside in the refrigerator to let the flavors come together. Note: I let my dressing set for 24 hours.

Meanwhile, for the salad, halve, core, and cut the pears into thin slices. Toss pear slices together with frisee leaves and toasted pecans in a large salad bowl. Drizzle with dressing and fold in the crumbled goat cheese. Serve immediately.

Notes/Results: I have been wanting to make this salad since I received the book. It is creamy, sweet, salty, and crunchy. I absolutely loved it and think it would be great for any Holiday table, especially with the red bartlet pears. The pears do need to be somewhat firm or they will fall apart in the salad. I couldn't find salted pecan halves, so I coated them in a little butter, sprinkled them with a little salt and roasted them in the oven at 350F for about 8 minutes. I think dried cranberries would be a great addition to this salad and they would add a wonderful dimension with their tart and chewy flavor. This salad was extremely healthy, especially with the creme fraiche subbed out with the Greek yogurt. I looked at the nutritional information for the goat cheese and saw that the package was 4 ozs. Each 1 oz. serving of goat cheese is only 70 calories. This would be a great main dish or side dish to any table. Add a whole grain roll or slice of bread and all food groups are represented!! A definite make again recipe!

What are you serving for Thanksgiving? How do you get around the issue of limited oven space and too many things requiring your attention? I'd love to hear your secrets!!