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We're celebrating Meatless Mondays with balanced, delicious meal plans. We hope you'll join us -- whether you're vegetarian all the time or just here and there.
Today: Have everything you want and have it all at once (for dinner, at least).
You can't always get what you want. Fortunately, that implies that there are times when you can. And we're making sure tonight is one of those times. You won't have to choose between sweet or salty, crunchy or creamy, healthy or indulgent. You can have it all at once. Just call it multitasking.
The salad here packs all of your favorite ingredients -- punchy pomegrante seeds, tangy goat cheese, ripe pears, and toasty pistachios -- into one dish. Because it's heavy on the fruit and short on the vegetable, serve the salad alongside tender, spiced carrots coated a maple glaze to balance out your meal. It's a pairing substantial enough to leave you satisfied, yet light enough to fit into your post-holiday detox.
The only thing that's missing now? A fresh piece of bread and a square of good dark chocolate.
1 large shallot, halved and thinly sliced
1 tablespoon pomegranate molasses
2 tablespoons sherry or apple cider vinegar
2 ripe pears
4 cups arugula, lightly packed
4 cups romaine
1/3 cup pomegranate seeds
1 pound carrots
1/4 cup pistachios
3/4 teaspoon cumin seeds
3/4 teaspoon coriander seeds
1/4 cup real maple syrup
3 ounces fresh goat cheese or feta
We're assuming you have salt, pepper, olive oil, and butter on hand. If not, add those to your list, too.
1. Make the vinaigrette by combining the shallot (halved and thinly sliced) with the pomegranate molasses in a small bowl. Add the vinegar, 1/2 teaspoon salt, and 1/4 teaspoon pepper and whisk until salt is dissolved. Whisk in 1/3 cup of olive oil and set aside.
2. Core the pears and cut into 1/2-inch cubes. Put them in a large bowl with the arugula, romaine (torn into bite-size pieces), and half of the pomegranate seeds.
3. Next, cut the carrots into 1/2-inch thick batons. Heat a heavy-bottom skillet over medium heat. Carefully toast the pistachios and set aside.
4. Crack the cumin and coriander seeds with the flat side of a knife, then toss them in the hot skillet over medium-high heat for about 10 seconds. Lower the heat to medium and add 2 tablespoons of butter and a teaspoon of olive oil. Swirl the pan to coat the spices.
5. Toss in the carrots and sauté for about 3 minutes, stirring frequently, then add 1/4 teaspoon of salt.
6. Add the maple syrup and continue to stir and swirl the pan for another 3 to 5 minutes. The carrots are ready when they’ve started to caramelize and are almost fork-tender.
7. Finish the salad. Crumble half the cheese over the bowl of greens, then add almost all of the vinaigrette. Toss the salad to coat the ingredients with the vinaigrette, adding more if the salad seems dry.
8. Crumble the remaining cheese over the salad and sprinkle the reserved pomegranate seeds. Chop the pistachios you toasted earlier and add them to the salad.
9. Spoon the maple glaze over the carrots and serve alongside the carrots and a generous slice of bread.
Photos by Sarah Shatz and James Ransom